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WritingYour Heart Out

Updated on April 30, 2011

Let Your Heart Speak

"Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart."- William Wordsworth

As a writer, you are commissioned to speak from the heart.  In order to do so, you must listen to your heart.  You must hear your heart.  Your heart must pump with more than blood.  It must speak to you with thoughts and intentions of writing from the heart to heart.

Allow your heart to open up and reveal the true you.  Let it speak through your characters and their dialogue.  Let your heart speak through the themes and subjects that you write about in your poetry, prose or plays.

Listen to your heart and let it speak freely.

Find a Voice for Your Heart

 Alice Walker blew her readers minds with a diary-like novel called The Color Purple.  Agatha Christie showed her readers the depths of human deception through her mysteries.  Victor Hugo let his readers see the desperation of humanity to live with dignity in Les Miserables and The Hunchback of Notre Dame.  Writers find a voice for what is on their hearts and share it by voicing it through characters, settings and themes.

Look at the unlikely hero Quasimoto (Quasimodo) in Hugo's Hunchback.  Paired opposite of Esmeralda the beautiful gypsy woman, this man is considered less of a man and more of a beast, but he exhibits such character and heroics through the tale that the reader forgets his deformity and feels something beyond sympathy for the protagonist.  His love interest, the young gypsy woman, appears to have outer beauty that is outweighed by the intolerance of society for the reputation of her people.  Throughout the story, the reader becomes engrossed in the unraveling of this tale and feel for the characters.  The reader cannot help but hear Victor Hugo's heart for those considered outcasts by society, especially when one compares such characters to Hugo's Jean Valjean in Les Miserables.

Find a voice for your heart.  Write in that voice.  Write from that voice.

Let Others Hear Your Heart

 Benjamin Franklin is credited withsaying: "Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing." You have options available to you.  Your primary objective as an author is to communicate with others through your writing.  Others should hear your heart when they read your writing.  They should get a glimpse of you and your perspective on certain things in life.

By reading John Steinbeck, you could get a sense of his appreciation for the diversity of stories that exploded within California.  Of Mice and Men and The Grapes of Wrath reveal John Steinbeck's views of the challenges faced by many people throughout the Great Depression in California.  The reader gains insights into Steinbeck's interpretation of his times and what was transpiring in the live of some people as they sought opportunity in California.

Charles Dickens wrote of the plight of the poor in 19th century England.  Through Dickens, we meet Oliver Twist and Ebenezer Scrooge as well as a cast of characters that seem to serve as caricatures of real people and personalities we know in some kind of way.  Yet, Dickens wrote of his own times and the social reforms that cried out for greater change in England at that time.

Your task is to write so convincingly that you convey your heart to your readers.  Do not get so caught up in the technicalities of the craft that you lose heart.  Do not forget to let your heart emerge as a voice that sets the tone for change or awareness.  Let others hear your heart through your writing.


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