There are many reasons why people write. Over the next few blogs, we are going to look at some of those reasons. Is writing significant?
Humans want to feel significant, to have some meaning or reason to be alive on this earth. For many it isn’t enough just to work, raise a family, build a life, retire then die despite the fact that you could argue that is the reason why we exist. Our existence is much more layered than that and we are complex beings consisting of a range of spiritual and emotional depths.
This is where art comes in and why it’s so very important to us. We use art to make sense of our world, our selves and our worth. We want to know why we are here and what impact we have by being here. We don’t like to think that we are just a tiny dot in the history of time (even though we are and it’s humbling to realise this).
Is it ego that drives this need? I’m no psychologist or philosopher, so I can’t really say too much about this but I do understand the driving need to feel significant after working with other writers and from my own writing practice.
So is writing significant, does it leave something significant for when we are dead and gone? I would say it does. For every writer out there toiling over the page, trying to get thoughts and ideas into some kind of shape, they are making sense of the world. It might be in poetry, a novel or a self-help book, even a children’s book. All of these forms have truth and impart the writer’s reality and knowledge. How good or bad the writing is beside the point because the writer is finding ways to express him/herself, looking for meaning in life. This becomes significant in two ways: the writer has created something and the world is given a creation (good or bad).
Of course, we can argue that art needs to be good. What does that mean exactly when art is subjective? Any piece of art can create discussion and relevance in a good or bad way. I agree that we should strive to create something of value in terms of skill and outcome but at the end of the day, who is to say that someone’s poem isn’t worthy of existing if it isn’t deemed perfect in the realms of poetry? Who are these gatekeepers that tell us that a piece of writing isn’t written well so it isn’t worth anything? It becomes about relativity. One person’s writing can have a significant impact on some readers but not others and yet it is significant to the creator.