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Friday, February 15, 2019

Just Write, Damn It

We spend more and more time in front of our keyboards. We work, play, connect, research, all with fingers poised, eyes strained, and necks crooked. As writers, we’re isolated. Some of us are lucky to have agents and publishers, maybe even nominations and awards. But for all others? What keeps us going?

Obviously, the drive to create via the written word is a powerful life force. Mere creation is a joy, but is there more?

We can sometimes take for granted our gift of being able to string words together in a cohesive pattern.  The power of being a writer can be hidden in daily life.

You know by now that I’ve volunteered at a therapeutic riding stable dedicated to helping people with special needs learn to ride. Clients have a spectrum of issues from Down Syndrome to stroke injuries. Everyone is unique with their skills and needs.

Five years ago, I was paired with a client and we quickly became a team. Each lesson consisted of me leading her horse while she built her independent skills. We talked about our lives outside of the stable and laughed a lot.

One day, she presented me with a short story. The first she had ever written.
I cherish the many stories she has given me – all the more because she passed away suddenly in January.

Her sister asked me if I could help write the obituary and read a post I wrote about our friendship at the service.

The stable has asked me to speak at their annual fundraising gala because, well, they heard I could string together a few words pretty well.

So, write. Pour your heart into what you do and create. Don’t worry about the success of others with stories published, books in print, or awards won. Write what you love and conjure worlds. While you’re at it, kill off a few people and talk about your favorite murder techniques–you know, just to keep people around you on their best behavior.

But don’t stop writing. It might not look the same to all writers, but somehow, your daily life will be empowered by the written word.