I cannot stop thinking about Ratatouille right now… So I just have to leave this here before I begin.
So, anyone can cook… I mean write… right?
The only real prerequisite for being a writer is a basic grasp of the language you wish to write in.
This does not ensure you will be a great writer, of course. If you know how to use the English language, but have never actually read a book and have no idea how to plot, character build or world build, it is quite possible that your writing will not be very popular. Or even make sense.
Then again, you might be a writing savant so I cannot judge…
But, lets assume for now that anyone CAN write. Does that mean that everyone SHOULD write?
This question feels pretty philosophical. If a tree fell in the woods but nobody hears, did it really happen? Or course it did!
Writing does not strictly HAVE to be about writing for others. Or writing for money. Or writing for fame. In fact, most aspiring writers will never achieve any of these things (sorry to be a downer here). Besides, people write in journals, and personal blogs, and diaries all the time. Nobody (unless the writer wishes for it) will ever read this form of writing.
That is why I believe everyone SHOULD write, but write for the right reasons (gah, so many homophones in this post).
Writing isn’t about becoming the next J.K Rowling (although we can all admit that it would be nice). Writing is about developing skills and going on a journey. Writing is a community, and a culture, and a lifestyle. It is a way to explore and understand the world through our own creative lens.
I believe writing – in any form – is a gift and should be cherished and respected for the honest expression of creativity that it is. Writing, like all forms of art, is important. It is what makes us human and without it life on earth would be very different.
Without writing there would be no history books. No textbooks. No laws. No organised government. No secret messages passed between friends at school. No loving travel postcards to share. No Facebook or Twitter. No email. No pen-pals from the other side of the world.
Life would be singular and lonely without this form of communication we have developed.
So, I believe everyone who CAN write, SHOULD write. Not to become famous and make buckets of cash, but to express themselves in whatever form they desire, and develop their own understanding of the world through this new, creative lens.
(Previously published on The Storytellers Hub)