Wednesday, September 28, 2011
What does it mean, this "Writer"?
Do I simply scribe words to paper, ideas to computer screens? Is it a vocation, a choice, as one may choose to be a firefighter or a lawyer? Or-dare I even suggest-it is something more mystical. Cosmic. SUPER-natural?
It can be both, I believe. There are those who understand words, who construct prose with the precision of a brain surgeon's scalpel. Their work is good, flawless, to be envied.
There are others who had no choice. Those who must write to let off some of the pressure that builds up inside their heads and their hearts. Without a pen, without their laptop, they are like a kettle of boiling water with no whistle: they self-destruct without release. These people are consumed. The fire of fiction, of poetry, courses through them white hot and dangerous.
They bleed ink into story.
Day in, day out. Like breathing. It is their breathing. Glowing steady, stars at true north, they point the way for those who would dare dance with that flame. It is risky, dangerous, all consuming.
But truer words cannot be written than by those willing to give themselves to the story rather than attempt to tame it. Ultimately, it is the story that speaks the truth. The writer is simply the conduit through which that truth flows.