Why she writes

From the blog of piccolo_pirate:

I write because otherwise the words would stew around in my head and explode outwards in strange directions. I write because I need the coherency of a single train of thought instead of the chaos that reigns in my silences.

I write because it feels good, because I like the way my body relaxes into the writing or tenses when I’m trying to force ideas out, the way I can forget I even have a body, sometimes. I like the feeling of being supreme and in control of every word I choose. I like to let loose and watch the words fly and know that some of them are messy and maybe that’s a good thing.

I write to manipulate the English language, to play with words and syntax and sometimes just to see words on paper that no one ever uses or wants to read – even if I delete them later. I write because I like the way words sound and feel on my tongue and in the back of my throat.

I write because I understand literature better when I can analyze and dissect and articulate visually, instead of the hesitant half-thoughts of oral discussion or the split-second reactions that collide and melt in my brain.

I write because when I can’t write I think out loud, in long streams of conversation with no one in particular, and let’s face it, a girl wandering the halls alone speaking full sentences out loud is rarely treated as a psychological equal. I write, then, to prove somehow that I’m not crazy, that the way I view the world is valid, worth considering. I write to seek redemption for being different.

I write because no other pursuit would support this kind of verbal melodrama and because sometimes I need to be alone with my thoughts and I can’t explain why. I write because I want to, and because I need to, and because I can’t imagine the world without this outlet for every emotion and every situation.

I write because I have been encouraged to write since I first picked up a pen, and because in eight grade they told me I was a crappy writer.

I write because I love it and because it makes me happy and sometimes, like right now, I’m moody and low and there’s nothing else I want to do. I write because it anesthetizes feelings or because it heightens them. I write to feel ashamed of my whining and occasionally also to indulge in it.

I write to feel acutely aware of my place in the universe; I write to feel small. I write to feel important. I write to feel simultaneously insignificant and yet the possessor of this valuable ability to record brief snatches of life.

I write because in writing I don’t have to be perfect the first time, or the fifth, or the twenty-fifth. I write to revise and select and cross out, crumple and delete, because life has no delete key and there are no stacks of fresh paper waiting when you’ve worn eraser holes in your latest attempt.

I write to understand everything. I can’t. I write anyway.

And sometimes, I write because it’s due and I can’t think of anything and I pretend there’s nothing to worry about, and I fudge the reading and come up with a topic and slap words onto paper and hit print and turn it in and I feel guilty when it comes out badly, and guiltier still when it comes out well.

But mostly I write because there is a piece of my brain that won’t be still unless I’m writing, and because when I am most alive, I am sharply aware of this impatient desire to channel the moment into words so I can always remember how it felt.

(February 2006)


Now read it aloud again. It just flows off the tongue like melted butter. Someday I wish I could write like that, and for the same reasons.

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