July is almost in the rear view and I’m back with my final admonition for the month. Thank you to those who’ve stuck with me, and for those who may just be reading me for the first time, thank you for dropping by.
In our first post, I attempted to scare you a little. I bring that back now with a twist, as only I am able to wring from my own word nerding.
Who cares? Who cares if you write? Especially if everyone else writes too. Who cares if you know grammar and punctuation? Who cares about your story? If I were a gambler, I’d probably place money on the odds that you yourself will reach a point where discouragement brings these words up in your soul. And logically, we know, or we should by now if we are adults, that no one will be as passionate as you are about your dream.
So yeah, who cares? It’s a thing. The struggle is real.
So here’s the truth: you care.
Your words are an extension of you and no one can tell your story better than you yourself. If you didn’t care, you wouldn’t write. Even if you never make a bestseller shelf, remember this: Your words wait for you in your future. They either work for you or against you, but once spoken or written – they are forever released do to what they will. And in this age of data data data, your words will outlive you. From the journal that captures snippets of a life your great great grandkids can only imagine, to the sprawling series that becomes a part of pop culture—you never know where your words will land, so take root and create something amazing.
Steward them well. Be intentional with them. Consider them your legacy and pour into them your identity. Create worlds and images, jot down descriptions of wildflowers and sunsets using every word for red and gold and blue you know. Write love poems for your family, letters to your friends, lengthy comments on your favorite cooking blogs. Fill your phone with text docs. Be a writer.
Other than my obvious dig at fan fiction, I’ve not maligned much in this series. So I leave you with a couple of “don’ts” just to balance the world on its axis.
Don’t quit writing. You may go through dry spells and busy spells and my-in-law-turned-me-into-a-frog spells (did that to see if you’re paying attention), but don’t quit. Writing is a fluid, flexible thing. It will change over the course of a lifetime, in content and style, but it will always be at your disposal if you are a writer at your core.
My other don’t: Don’t destroy your writing because you think it sucks. Your “suck” may be someone else’s mind blowing epiphany. Or maybe it will just bring a bit of peace in the chaos.
You see, you just cannot know where your words will go if they continue after you leave the bandwidth for the heavens. And don’t put your words under the care of someone else to steward after you’re gone. Even those you trust may think they are benefiting your memory by censoring your work.
Put it out there where it will find its audience.
Unless its fanfiction. If its fan fiction – get a flamethrower.
Tammy Boehm, Associate Editor