I write because of an innate need to connect. I love it when someone relates to what I have written and they go, “That’s exactly how I feel!” Or shake their head and think, “Oh dear! That’s so true.” I love this unseen bond you make with the reader. It is exciting, exhilarating and addictive. Be it sharing your memories, your dark thoughts or dreams, your aspirations and fantasies. It is bound to touch a chord somewhere. It is also the need to tell all the untold stories. In this fast-paced life, there are many undocumented moments; of joy, of sadness, of hope and despair. Writing encases that moment, gives it the attention it deserves and the rightful consideration it demands.
Writing is a concrete way to voice an opinion. To boldly stand by what you think and believe in. It makes a good personal history of the thoughts you have experienced. It paints a picture of a person; where the flaws and imperfections maybe difficult to hide but there’s always beauty. The best writing inspires, it makes you think and cajoles you to convert words into actions. Such moments are rare and quickly fade away. That’s why you need to hold on to it tightly and requires constant reminders. Good writing makes you sit up and take notice and wonder why haven’t you felt or thought something this way before. It makes you question yourself and others.
Writings helps you overcome your difficulties; be it a break-up or the death of a loved one. Putting words onto paper and filling it up with your thoughts can be therapeutic. It is when you become both; the patient as well as the physician. Writing can be soothing; it can put your mind at ease and help you relax. It helps re-live an unforgettable experience and deal with the painful ones. It helps put things into perspective. It can be revealing and sometimes forces you to evaluate your actions. It makes you re-examine the course you are on and check if the path that you are treading on it the right one. Writing makes you admit your faults and own up to them. It forces you see yourself as exactly what you are without any resistance or reluctance.
Old writings serve as a reminder of a lesson that you may have forgotten or a lost connection. Writing is inherent to someone who is a self-proclaimed nostalgia junkie, like me. It creates a warm, fuzzy feeling both in the reader and the writer. It creates love and longing with short spurts of joy. It is endearing and assuring; that something that happened a long time back did not just matter to you and there is someone out there who felt the same way as you did. You learn to appreciate these moments in retrospect.
Writing can be frustrating sometimes. Those thoughts that come to you intermittently, on nights when sleep evades you; can be brilliant but without any clarity it’s difficult to put everything down. Technology definitely helps both in writing and sharing. It can be viewed as narcissistic by some. The need for validation, for appreciation. But it also means sharing something personal, a platform to be questioned and an opportunity for your thoughts to be examined. It takes some courage to put your naked thoughts out there for all to see, to stand by every word you wrote. It makes you daring and dramatic.
Writing makes you responsible. You may unwittingly change someone’s thinking or shape someone’s thoughts. Do you really want the credit or the blame that comes with it? It could hurt someone or be misconstrued. It is challenge to convey something without ruffling feathers. Just try writing something against popular opinion and find out how loyal or tolerant your readers are. There is a choice you make with every word you write.
There’s something definite about putting a thought down on paper; maybe makes it more permanent. Words are wind, it is famously said. But I believe the written word does carries much more weight. I would like to think, it is much more difficult to forget something if you have written it down. You have put thought and effort into it and probably changed it. But the final version that you take pride in is more difficult to turn your back on.
Writing can sometimes prove challenging but is always fulfilling. There are times you may want to say something but the right words don’t come to you. It is like you have lost your voice for a while and trying to talk but the words don’t come out. Instead, you hear the laughter of the blank paper mocking you. These are the toughest moments; usually, when I give up and go find something interesting to read or watch. But I return, humbly and unfailingly because writing helps me live. It’s the best feeling when you write just for yourself.