Sunday, 10 January 2016

An Ode To The Words I've Breathed Before

I think I'm okay. 


The funny thing about writing is that it probably reveals more about you than you think. I think that's why there's always such an emphasis on reading between the lines. It's never a question as to what the writer has written but a question as to why they've written it. Or as your English teacher would most likely put it- what are they trying to convey? And maybe it's because we're more captivated with the writer themselves than the things they've written. Sure the words have a part to play in reeling in an audience, but it's the 'what inspired them?' or the 'what did they mean?' that keeps us up at night. It's the personal connection that we build through those words, as if the words are the writer themselves.

 Truth is, words are nothing more than the person that's using them. That's the scary thing.  A writer is everything and anything that they are capable of creating. They are a 7 foot giant.They are the meta human they've conjured up in dreams and so eagerly brought to life in their work. They are the missing commas in their essays ( Or more rather my essays, because my punctuation is so nonexistent it could make a grown man cry.).The apostrophes and the scenes they describe. They are the unfinished paragraphs in their notebooks. They are the words that they write. And the closest you could ever really get to a person is through the words they write or say.

I like to think that words are kind of like potential energy. It's both everything and essentially nothing at the same time. Take for example a tennis ball. Up until the moment that you throw the ball, it's only holding a potential form of energy. Kinetic energy in this case. It's once you let go that it suddenly becomes something else. You see, words are always there. It's only until they're used that they actually become something. And it got me thinking. Perhaps the things we create will always remain in a state of potential energy. 

Take for example Steinbeck in Of Mice And Men.  What if he hadn't written the first chapter of that book the day that he had? Would we have had an alternative beginning? In fact, would we have even had the same story as we do today? There has and will always be a million other alternative ways that a piece of writing could have gone. That's the thing with words isn't it? You have so much yet so little power and control over the things you say and write. In the end the writer may have full control over what they put out, but the experiences they've had and the people they encounter- the things that shape that person and their stories- will never be in their control.  And weirdly, I like it like that.

But I'm not sure if I can consider myself a writer yet.

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