“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.” — Dr. Seuss
Revealing has been a HUGE trend in America for the past 20 years with Reality TV programs, talk shows and game shows taking center stage. People have become very comfortable humiliating themselves in front of large, engaged, audiences. American combat troops fight daily in Iraq, coverage broadcasted throughout the day but Reality TV doesn’t seem lacking in ratings and new shows keep popping up. Apparently, bloodshed and dismembered body parts isn’t enough action for American viewers.
But prior to Survivor, Oprah and The Newlywed Game, writers have revealed themselves for hundreds of years to unknown readers. The simple fact is: “When you choose to write, you also choose to introduce your soul to the world,” and that choice is brave.
(That being said, if you are writing directions on “How to put together the latest end table from Ikea” you don’t need to worry about revealing much, except, hopefully, an actual end table.)
Be it poetry or prose, fiction or non, a writer’s opinion, personality and perception slip into the sentences like falling crumbs from a delicious sandwich and upon finishing your meal you ask yourself, “Do I want to clean up these crumbs or not?”
There is something exciting about being exposed. During a casual conversation someone makes a perceptive comment about who you are. Suddenly, your face freezes, thoughts mix and you feel a tight grasp at your throat. You stare at the messenger, thinking, “How do they know that?”—then spend a significant amount of time searching for an answer. Writers knowingly put themselves in this position every time they submit a piece and sometimes ( for good reasons) have regrets. Revealing can lead to rejection, a common fear among most and paralyzing to some —not all of us have the wonderful self-esteem of Dr. Seuss. We re-read what is already written and wonder if people will now be able to figure out our once well-guarded secrets and if so—will they still like us?
But that is part of the thrill of writing; perhaps, that is why we spend hours writing and rewriting sentences to feel that sense of being exposed and hopefully—understood? Writing helps us to connect to others in a way that is not experienced through other art forms and that is what makes it strangely unique and sometimes, softly, satisfying.
Writers will continue to express what they can and reveal what they must, it is what they do.
Thank you for visiting “Jaen’s World”, my next post is in one week. If there are any issues or events you would like to read about please let me know.