There's nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and open a vein. ~Walter Wellesley "Red" Smith
I have owned a journal since the 3rd grade. I still have that journal, and from time to time (and when I need a really good laugh,) I open it up for a little read. Owning a journal is not so much a big deal to most, but for me it defined who I am, who I used to be, and who I hoped to become.
You see, I have always reveled in the written word - whether it was a classic author who tempted my imagination or my own simple scribbles. I am never without a book or two, (or three.) I write once if not two times daily in this blog. I write press releases most days. I write scripts, speeches, quotes, you name it. I keep a prayer journal, a poetry journal, and an old trunk FULL of old scraps of paper with ideas and short stories. I have video tapes full of packages I edited (package is a broadcaster's term for a story.) On those tapes, I have entire newscasts (because I was the producer, I pretty much wrote the whole thing, on a daily basis.) I have magazines upon magazines and newspaper clippings with my work on it. My degree is in journalism.
I am, for better or for worse, a writer. (Yes, I actually get PAID to do this.)
Before you click your tongue or get too judgemental, I write in broadcast style - sorry. Which means, I am conversational. You can see the difference if you pop over to my sister's blog. She writes more like a print person. I spent 5 years learning that style, then using ONLY that style forever. Many times, what you see is exactly what I would say to you. I want to speak directly to you. Crazy thing is - Punctuation and caps are not considered when writing in broadcast style. The above sentence would look more like this: MANY TIMES... WHAT YOU SEE IS EXACTLY WHAT I WOULD SAY TO YOU//
(If this style of writing bothers you, I do apologize!)
What is fascinating about writing these days is that everyone considers themselves a writer in some form or another. I LOVE it, I really do. It is fun to see friends begin to tackle something that is wonderful for their self expression, great to exercise the mind and finally because it gives people a sense of accomplishment. Whether or not the sentences flow, or the thoughts are profound or original does not matter -it's just a great thing to see people TRY.
Look at the amount of blogs surfacing on the Internet! I think it is a wonderful thing to see people share something that means so much to them (with the world.) People write for so many different reasons: To vent, to educate, to share, to work through, to remember... and on and on. Some share their art work, or their expertise.. some even sell things - for whatever reason, they have found a place in the world that is all their own.
The other phenomenon that gives me giggles are the "want to be published" folks. Man.. you are talking about a HARD industry to break into, unless.. of course.. you choose to "self publish." (Which means you put up all the money for the actual book, then try to sell it somewhere like - local bookstores or amazon.) To me - getting a book published and picked up by a major publishing house is like getting a role as a supporting actor or leading lady in a movie. It's the privileged few. Then again.. you never know unless you try.
It is a beautiful thing to see something like Ballet become second nature to most little girls. I remember when I was small, there were only a few of us who pursued the art. Now it is commonplace and almost expected. More and more art classes are popping up everywhere, and theater is an excellent resource in most communities. The one other art form that is slowly creepy up is writing. FINALLY it is cool to hang out in libraries and carry a journal. I am thrilled to see the changes. (I remember taking a creative writing class once, and my friends in school were like - "WHAT?" They were busy with softball, you see.)
So to all of you budding writers and to those of you waaay more accomplished than many of us will ever be - this post is dedicated to you.
Because.. isn't that what all writers do? Thank someone... ;-)