I am a writer. It’s less something I do and more who I am. This does not mean that I am a good writer–I think I am decent, but that’s mostly through years of practice. It just means that my response to life is to write things.
I express myself better on paper than I ever can aloud. I am bolder, louder, more opinionated, and more lyrical. If I have to say something important to say, I am more likely to inform the person through a letter. If I am not sure of why I feel a certain way, I write it out the way most girls I know talk it out. Writing is my first language. It has influenced my speech such that, although people say “You write like you talk,” the truth is, I talk the way I write. Pen and paper, or print on screen, is my favorite method of expression.
If I don’t know what to do, I write. In fact, I wrote several pages of one of my stories searching for inspiration for this paper. Recently, one of my good friends lost her mother. My response to that was to start writing–and somehow, I wrote the cheesiest story I’ve ever seen, much less written, and somehow it made her laugh. My life immediately following coming to college was upside down and backwards, so I began journaling and writing my devotionals out. I write to make sense of a world that is rather nonsensical at times.
I can’t stop writing–sometimes, the ideas fly through my head at such lightning-quick speed that it seems I can’t write them fast enough. My room is filled with legal pads with snippets of backstory and story ideas. My computer is filled with stories that I hate, but can’t bear to delete, and a couple that give me joy every time I read them. Half-finished play scripts and plot outlines wait for me to finally flesh them out. Bits of paper and receipts with half-thought out poems and ideas for blog posts stuff my purse so full that I occasionally have trouble finding a blank piece to write on. My handwriting is atrocious because I never spent time refining it. There was and is too much to write and not enough time. I can make it look beautiful later. Right now, I have to write.
My writing is often intensely personal. I am a rather shy person, and I am afraid to share my thoughts and dreams with others. I am also afraid that they will mock my rather poor skills. I frequently become frustrated with how poorly the words I write convey my meaning. In addition, when I feel that something conveys my meaning perfectly, but the person to whom I am showing it understands me not at all, I become despairing. How can I ever write things that will bring glory to God if my closest friends don’t even understand what I’m trying to say?
In the end, though, I keep writing. I don’t write for my audience; I don’t write because I think I have anything new or world-changing to say; I don’t even write so that I will remember things. I write because I must, because there are words inside of me that demand to be set down on paper. I write because I am a writer, and that is who I am.