Writing Stories That Matter
As writers, we are given thousands of expectations and burdens of what the world thinks of us. Agents and publishers are concerned about the audience and the ability to produce, produce, produce. The search for books that people will read is never-ending. More books are being published than ever before, because of advancements of technology making new opportunities. But in this mad scramble to publish, and put forth, we have lost sight of the main purpose of writing. Writing can be entertainment, but not just that—it can teach, it can help us empathize, help us feel. I always wondered how classic books published hundreds of years ago could be so much more relate-able to how I felt, compared to the writing of someone living in the same time as me. I’ve heard many other people wonder the same thing. I believe we as people, especially writers, have lost sight of the main purpose of writing. In a culture so focused on being noticed, that becomes our goal. We’ve thrown away what makes a book beautiful in the effort to be revered in people’s eyes. But it’s not about how the audience sees us or our writing. Fame is fleeting, but to write something of value, can last hundreds of years. Writing should be something to show others how you see the world, perhaps to allow the reader a glimpse into your own world. Money, fame, and all that goes with it doesn’t matter if the reader has felt something by the work you have done. We live in a culture shrouded by darkness, death, and sickness and millions of written stories that mirror the horrid things we see from day to day. A breath of fresh air is filled with smog, and our water is contaminated. Instead of holding stories of warmth, life, and freedom to our hearts, we seek the relate-ability of the darkness. Darkness will always be an element, for without it you cannot see the Sun. But when you read the books that mean something to you, there is always a ray of light, however small, that shines through the black curtain. As writers, we should strive to make art that means something—not something to be noticed or sold - but something that makes others feel. And as people, we should write our lives in such a way that though darkness surrounds us, we are filled with the light.