Of writers and writing


What is it about writing? I sit in front of my laptop, and begin to write what would hopefully be the literary masterpiece of all time. Five agonizing minutes later, the page is as white as the screen would allow, as blank as my mind would reluctantly admit. Then I think, what the heck, let me check my email for a second.  It wouldn’t hurt to read a few emails. After all, email is the lifeline of my job.  And even if there is no important email to expect this late Monday evening, except for special deals from Walmart, the 25% discount from CVS, the ‘we-pay-sales-tax’ come-on from Orchard, or a 50% off your next cruise from vacationstogo.com, who knows… a client might just decide that he wants to now list his Newark home. Oh, but that can wait. If I do receive such email, it will not change the fact that I will still wait for the following morning to act on his email, give him a call maybe, or respond to his email. Emails are not urgent at this time of day, I mean, night.

I check my email anyway.

Yep, very predictable emails – discount offers, webinar invites, friend requests on facebook. That latter one looks interesting. Who is Ginny? I need to find out who she is? Why is she befriending me on fb? Who are our common friends? How did she know me? Should I accept her invitation? I need to know. My curiosity can’t wait.

You guessed it. My next click: Facebook.

Back to the blank page. Still blank. It will remain blank until it is populated by words. And not by unnecessarily diverting your time to other mundane tasks. Think, think, think. And think some more.

“Writing is easy: All you do is sit staring at a blank sheet of paper until drops of blood form on your forehead”.  — Gene Fowler, American journalist.

I have immense admiration for those whose job is to write…everyday…every waking hour.  They face blank pages with courage, their hands eager to type the words that will be featured in tomorrow’s news, or next week’s magazine cover, or even just for one’s own personal blog. Their minds are ready to share a wide variety of diverse ideas and thoughts, stories of awe and wonder, profound essays that enrich one’s spirituality, or simple how-to articles that empower readers to develop their own skills.

The pen is their weapon (actually, it is probably the keyboard to most now). Whether it is a means of livelihood or simply a pastime, writing is a powerful tool that rewards the writer in ways that money cannot measure.  To be able to inform and enlighten, incite a constructive thought, embrace the weary with words of inspiration, encourage one to become a better person, and challenge the weak to rise up and be counted – what can be more rewarding! Hats off to writers – your silence is heard loud and clear.