When is the last time you did something brave?
Did you write in your journal last night? Did you write that blog post yesterday? How about that story that you’ve been wanting to tell? You know, the one with the magic and the paranormal creatures? Or maybe the one that’s based very solidly in the real world. The one that explores a topic you feel deeply about. Did you get started on that last week? Did you start planning your non-fiction book? Write an article? Or maybe do some free writing or creative writing exercises?
If so, congratulations. You did something brave.
You took something that was inside your head and put it to physical form. You gave it life. That’s hard to do.
I’m not even talking about the part of the writing process where you start showing people what you’ve written. Maybe even put it up for sale or download somewhere, and then started to receive feedback on it. That part is hard too, and requires courage, but that’s not what I’m talking about here.
I’m talking about the head to screen/paper process. The taking of your words and putting them somewhere outside your own mind.
When you write something down, you give that thing respect. You’ve taken it out of its formless state, and given it a form. It’s permanent (well, barring any fires or computer crashes). You can touch it (maybe), see it, you can share it. It has a life outside of you now.
It might not go much of anywhere, particularly if it’s a journal entry or a writing exercise, and, in some sense, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that your words now exist somewhere outside of you.
To write something down, you have to feel like it has some kind of importance, and it can be difficult for us to think that things swimming inside our own heads have a lot of importance. So you take a risk. You take the risk to actually write down what you’re thinking and feeling – a story, an article, a journal entry, and hope that you haven’t done something frivolous or self-indulgent.
Because you spent some time and energy on your thoughts/ideas. Maybe you spent a lot of time and energy on your thoughts/ideas. You hope that it was worth it.
But it was worth it. It may not be worth it in the sense of fame and fortune, but it was worth it to take that time to acknowledge and respect your thoughts/ideas/imaginings/feelings/fantasies and simply write them down.
Who knows where they might end up.