LOGISMOS ~ Why Do We Write?
Why Do We Write?
Of course, there are as many answers as there are writers . . . but there are a few basic groups most fall into. Not everybody does write, and certainly not everyone writes with the intent that others will be reading what they've written. But we, all of us hubbers here, write regularly, probably have just about always written in some manner, and we come here and publish what we've written expecting others to read what we write. Because not everyone does such a thing, it seems to me an interesting consideration to ponder why some, namely us, do.
In the initial article for my hub series "Regular, Normal Christianity" I wrote this apology;
"If anyone is going to offer their own thoughts and views as publicly published material, it seems to me that they ought to count themselves to stand on somewhat unique ground - not that they must think themselves to be a very special person, but just that they must have something to offer that is not what everyone else already commonly thinks."
I believe that to be a valid observation and sentiment, however, not everyone who stands on unique ground, not all who have something to offer that is not what everyone else already commonly thinks, writes - there are people who have lived remarkable lives, who deliberate over deep and consequential ideas, yet are not so inclined to publish them for others. Many, just as clever and witty and interesting as we imagine ourselves to be do not write. So, why do we who do write, write?
Specifically addressing those of us here at HubPages, as I asserted, I think there are several basic and generalized groups that we fall into. First, we see many here who very simply are good at it, they are good writers. It's just basically fun to do something you're good at - apart from any praise from others, just to do a thing well is their motivation. I know men who do woodworking . . . they don't sell everything they make, and they don't always make things they need or could use - they simply are good at woodworking and so they enjoy the process. These hubbers, the good writers, might write about any number of things - for them, the catalyst to write is the writing, the process.
Then there are some with an agenda. For these folks prompting is not so much the process as it is the content. These folks have a message, a point of view they count important to share, even to persuade others to embrace. It may be a particular religious view, it may be a specific political opinion, etc, but for these folks the zeal is for the message, not in the process of writing.
Perhaps the most curious group to me are the bad writers, those who just (my apologies) don't have anything genuinely interesting to say or who simply write poorly. I'll, of course, not mention names or hubs, but I've seen a few hubs here that are basically far too much along this line ~
Creative Meals For The Hole Family -
First step, buy a can of beans. Next, buy a package of weenies. Once gotten home from a store, mix beans and weenies alltogether and enjoy! Heat them up first.
. . . now, honestly, if anyone has published a hub actually titled "Creative Meals For The Family" or anywhere offers the beans & weenie tip I've mocked above, please believe me I've not seen it and I'm, honestly, just making-up this scenario to demonstrate my point. The point being, I've seen a few hubs here I can't hardly believe are published and I really can't hardly believe the authors count themselves to be writers . . . the topic is pointless and the writing is juvenile. I don't say this to be cruel, and I certainly, honestly, am not suggesting myself as THE arbiter of what's good enough to be shared and published - I am only sharing my own confusion as I ponder why we write and how we come to think others ought to read what we write.
And I imagine there are some folks who love to read, and who delight to follow a certain series or a particular author, etc, and so they want to be a writer too. Similar to the tv singing competition shows, there is probably an endless number of folks who imagine they are writers simply because they would like to be one so badly. And others, I imagine, write as a vocation - for the cash.
For myself, I would confess this; whether I'm writing about historic Christianity or classic films or American Blues music, etc, I am writing about a passion, about something I treasure and want to share with others, something I want to see flourish and go on to greater appreciation. In that sense I have an agenda, the content of my writing is crucial to my actually writing a piece and publishing it. However, my prompting, my vigor, my enthusiasm to write rests in the writing itself, the process.
I personally look at writing like this; I have an idea in my head, but I'm a singular person, an individual way over here, disconnected from everyone else on the planet - so, no one else knows what I'm thinking, my ideas are exclusively mine. But I am a communal soul, I am built for relationships. The only way I can get the idea that's in my head over into your head, is through language, through words. The way I put it may sound excruciatingly precise and sterile to many, it may appear I'm making something obvious nearly indecipherable, but that is how I see it in my head. I write because I desire relationship, I need to relate to others around me . . . I need (at least some) others to know what's going on in my head and the only way they can know in their head what I know in my head is for me to use language, to send words from my mouth over to another's ear - or, words from the tips of my fingers over to another's eyes. So, I write - do you know, really know, why you write?
"Warm affections, without knowledge, can rise no higher than superstition; and that knowledge which does not influence the heart and affection, will only make a hypocrite"
~ John Newton
'How To Study The Bible'
'The Christian Library'
'Christian Life Lessons'