- Books, Literature, and Writing
A Question for Writers: Are You Addicted to the Words?
Ah, Sweet Addiction
Writers wallow in words. In fact, they are addicted to words. Webster defines addiction as "being abnormally tolerant to and dependent on something such as alcohol or drugs." The addiction may not show as you sit beside a writer, engaged in pleasant, banal conversation. You may not guess that all the while the words of the next story, poem or lyrics to a song are flowing through them like water down a river, sometimes turbulent if the words come to fast; sometimes almost stagnant when the words are slow to emerge or are elusive and slippery to the grasp.
Those scary moments, when the words are elusive, happen to be the hardest time of all.That is the precise moment the addiction shows it ugly face so vividly. The fix - the right words - isn't there; words can't be recalled or retrieved. Writers face the ultimate in agitation, aggression, restlessness and other symptoms of withdrawal when right words are out of grasp.
Words make statements and express thoughts to be shared with others. Words hold the power to change actions and beliefs. Words can change the world or a single individual.
If there is a doubt about what words can do, examine some of the great speeches throughout time or look at the first written words of a preschooler. Think of great speeches through time: Martin Luther King, Abraham Lincoln. Or think of the books, good, bad, ugly or indifferent that have been passed down through time.
Words uplift, tear down or are simply neutral. There is a reason the pen is mightier than the sword. It puts the words to paper; it creates. Swords mostly destroy.
Words can entertain, make you laugh, or heal the sick. Love affairs die or flourish on the basis of words. Shakespeare knew and captured this better than anyone.
This poem is an expression of the writer's attachment - no, addiction - to words.
I am addicted to words;
It's so very simple.
I like to watch the words
trip across the page,
Filling space unoccupied -
blank, lifeless -
Bringing into existence whole new worlds,
new universes, new beings,
Writing them into shape and form.
big meanings - hate, love, no, you, us, them.
tiny meanings - obfuscate, ubiquitous.
No matter; they paint a picture,
Tell a story,
Call masses to action...or soothe a soul.
Tear down, create; the words well done or not,
Once spoken cannot be retrieved.
In the beginning...
in the end
Is the word, always the word.
Copyright 2013 Cynthia Turner