Tuesday, January 31, 2012
Writing For Me
I have two quotes on writing that I feel speak to me as a writer. Both are a bit different but, both express my own thoughts and feelings towards my style.
“What no wife of a writer can ever understand is that a writer is working when he's staring out of the window.” ~Burton Rascoe
The first, though a bit sexist and dated is still true, I think for any writer. I know for myself, I am always writing. I will hear something on the radio on my way home, or see things, and I log it away for later, or I break out a recorder or my phone and take notes for things I will write at a later date.
I feel like I am always writing. Everything I see, hear and experience goes into my writing. To someone that doesn’t write, staring out the window may seem like doing nothing, but to a writer, the wheels are turning. To me, it shows that writing is an endless passion and not simply a task that one can sit down start and complete like making dinner or watching a movie.
The second is something that I think, speaks about language and the human condition that is a core part of writing. It is often the purpose of writing.
“Words are but the vague shadows of the volumes we mean. Little audible links, they are, chaining together great inaudible feelings and purposes.” ~Theodore Dreiser, 1900
We can say and write thousands of words and never quite capture the essence of feeling behind what we are trying to say. For example, the words ‘I’m sorry’y never seem to fully express the guilt, shame or sadness. They are just words. The writer’s job it so get as close to that feeling using the tools before us.
Together, these two quotes express many of my own feelings towards writing. It is ongoing and mysterious, as well as, challenging.