“You can approach the act of writing with nervousness, excitement, hopefulness, or even despair–the sense that you can never completely put on the page what’s in your mind and heart. You can come to the act with your fists clenched and your eyes narrowed, ready to kick ass and take down names. You can come to it because you want a girl to marry you or because you want to change the world. Come to it any way but lightly. Let me say it again: you must not come lightly to the blank page.” – Stephen King, On Writing
I came across this wonderful thought while reading King’s autobiography (for the third time!) last weekend.
This is a great thought for all writers – You must not come lightly to the blank page.
For a writer, a blank page represents what Mount Everest was to Hillary and Tenzing. It signifies what the moon mission was to Neil Armstrong.
Writing offers an astonishing journey to the uncharted regions of our imagination.
Writing is a formidable challenge to the literary spirit of adventure within us.
Writing, and I mean good writing, comes with passion. If you aren’t passionate about putting your words through writing, chances are dim that you will become a good writer.
Over the past few years I have been writing actively, I have come to know that good writing is an art. And as an artist, one requires three key attributes to become a good writer.
- He needs motivation – A reason to actually go through the trouble.
- He needs imagination – To see what others don’t.
- He needs word-power – Words that create magic!
If you don’t have these attributes, or even one of them, you don’t qualify to become a good writer. In fact it’s a self-reinforcing cycle.
The more you are motivated and imaginative, the better writer you can become.
And the better you get in your writing, the more motivated you become, and the greater are your imaginative powers.
Writing is Gruelling and Lonely
You don’t have to be crazy to write. But it helps. 🙂
This is what Douglas Adams, the famous English writer and dramatist once said about writing – “First of all, realize that it’s very hard, and that writing is a gruelling and lonely business and, unless you are extremely lucky, badly paid as well. You had better really, really, really want to do it.”
Given that the best of writing happens when you close all doors from the noise that interrupts you, writing cuts you off from the rest of the world. You get submerged in your imagination and memories to pull out stories that will be read.
Finally, just to quote Stephen King again – “Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life, as well.
“Writing is magic, as much the water of life as any other creative art. The water is free. So drink. Drink and be filled up.”
Drink and be filled up.