The Beginning of an Echo
We have all stood in a canyon, or an alleyway, or perhaps just inside a large, empty building and yelled "Hello!" just to hear our words come back to us in the form of an echo. The sound may come back once, or it may come back more than once. Occasionally, our sound never returns to us. At least, not in a form we can hear. It is still there, somewhere. We are simply unable to detect it.
How many of you who write have thought of our words formed here on this site to be a relative of the echo? We have created these words; we have cast them out into the heavens for them to be heard. We listen carefully, straining our ears for something to return to us. It might be a comment or two or fifty sent back to us saying our words have been heard and agreed with, or they might not have been agreed with and if not an argument, then a spirited discussion ensues.
But what of those words we cast forth and never hear anything back on? Were they worthless? Were they found wanting by all of those in the world who have seen them, read them, and walked along their merry way? In some cases, most in fact; we may never know.
Have you ever thought that the greats of the literary world put out their works in order to receive feedback? Until this day, I never thought about it. My mentor here on Hubpages, Billibuc, put out a work of art this day which caused me to stop and ponder for a moment. If we write, we are a writer. Therefore, if we write, and our words find an ear to listen or an eye to read then we are indeed a writer. It matters not what others think; we know.
Personally, I cannot say if those whose heads rise far above the landscape of the literary world ever thought that their words would be read, taught, dissected by hundreds, thousands, millions of people over years, decades, centuries. I think they thought that what they had to say whether in verse or in dialogue was important enough for them to put down in black and white; on paper or stone. And for them, that was good enough.
We cannot change our world in an instant; neither could they. They lit a fire which oftentimes smoldered for years until it caught and burned brightly. Then, we saw it. Or heard it. It lit a fire within us and caused us to think differently, or act differently than we had done before. The original creator of this work may never know what they have done; but we do. We who had it cast upon our fertile mind took it, nurtured it, and in turn harvested it ourselves. We then put forth our own works for others who follow to find, take to heart, and put into action themselves. We will never know these people, but they come. Most assuredly, they come.
Some thirty years ago I was at a revival at my church. I had been saved as a young adult and thought myself on the road to Heaven. But on one evening, a man taught the parable of The Wheat and The Tare. This is found in Matthew 13: 36 to 43. I had never heard it, and found myself fascinated. At the end of the sermon, he asked each of us to turn to the person next to us and declare: are we a wheat or are we a tare? If you do not know, a tare grows alongside of wheat, looking much like it for some time. It draws upon the soil, taking nutrients from the wheat. When it is mature, it provides nothing to sustain us. It is empty. So, was I filled with the Spirit, and did I "walk the walk"; or was I simply a shell of what I purported myself to be? I turned and said:
"I am a tare."
It hurt to say this. I could have lied to myself and the other man but something forced the truth out of me. And I became a better person for it that day. What Bill said in his hub "The Writer's Life" struck me in much the same manner. It forced me to take a look at myself and make a declaration to the world.
I am a writer.
I will no longer worry if I do not receive the feedback I am looking for in short order, or at all. I will simply write. I will walk the walk of a writer and allow all of my words to be sent out into the world. Perhaps some of them will fall into a fertile environment where they will enrich someone's life. My hope is that my words become wheat.
My second most visited hub here is a book review concerning the author, William P. Young and his followup work to The Shack entitled "Crossroads". Personally, I found The Shack to be a better book, and thought my review of it to be the better of the two. Not that Crossroads was an inferior read, simply that The Shack is a better one. But at this time, Crossroads has more than quadruple the views than my review of The Shack while having a distinction I have wondered about: it has no comments. This has bothered me until I decided that if someone reads my review and then reads the book, that is about as good a comment as I could have. I do not need to know that they have done this, but I trust that I have opened a door through which they moved, and in some manner I assisted them through. I need no more than that. That is enough.
I made a sound; the echo drew them to the source of that sound.
Every word we write will echo throughout time. Do you as writers realize that? Whether it be as a recipe brought down through our family or a short story or a political statement or something seemingly frivolous, the words we created will resound throughout time because we took the time to put them down for others to read, enjoy, think about. Maybe even act upon.
Write! If words be inside yearning to be released, release them! Do not respond to naysayers who attempt to put you down, or tell you your words have no meaning; if they are important to you, write them down. Put them out for others to read and enjoy. But do not become discouraged if you do not receive the feedback you desired in a timely manner; rather trust that your words will find an audience somewhere, sometime. It might be today, or tomorrow. It might be next year, or after you pass. It might be never. Do not allow that to cause you to hesitate.
Write. Because you enjoy it. Write because the words are within straining to get out. Write because you are a writer.
Create your sound. Allow that sound to echo through time for always. Be the beginning of an echo.
Thank you Bill. As always, you know what to say and when to say it.