As a writer, whether of books, articles, poems, short stories, essays, you name it, you add something vital to human life.
You can change the cultural climate at large, whether with major vibrations or smaller shakes, both of which are equally meaningful and relevant. You can also change individual lives and their ways of thinking and living.
We need story tellers, writers, authors, the way we need both food, air, and human connection. From others writings, we learn crucial life insights, lessons, new ideas, skills, alternate ways of living and being. We become privy to important world news, places we might never have heard of, a healthier way of living, a life path totally different from the one down which we were heading.
Also, as humans, our lives revolve around story. In the telling a friend about our day, this is essentially crafting a story. In describing to a loved one a particular memory or recent life experience…a story. In picking up a book, or watching a television show or movie, engaging in a story. When we daydream, often, we are partaking in and piecing out our own personal narrative, and ultimately, story. When we discuss a current challenge/dilemma/problem with someone to whom we are close, this is the making sense of a story. When we look back on a relationship that ended and consider why it might have been so, this is analyzing and considering a story. In observing your current relationship, considering how you met, the trajectory its since taken, how things have evolved and played out thus far…you guessed it, a story.
So, why is being a writer a crucial, society shifting, individual and life changing, incredibly awe inspiring and important job?
–Books, stories, and writing can and does change the way people think. Something you write can alter the way a person considers on a certain aspect of life, it can change how they approach a relationship (or, more than one), an insight you offer can shift how the reader thinks about or even lives a certain aspect of their life. This is an incredible, awesome thing. That your words and thoughts can do this. If even for just one other person, wow.
—You can create whole worlds and characters, entirely in your imagination. How flipping cool is that!? And ones in which other people feel fascinated, as well as can learn important life lessons by. What enriching and joyous fun. Being engaged in, not only your day to day life, but alongside of this, an entire alternate world and characters of your own making.
—You (via your story/words/book/article) are offering to others: a sense of escape, entertainment, as well as even support, empathy, and a feeling of connection. Whether writing about abuse, or a sense of loneliness, or on the contrary- being an introvert and reveling in and being totally ok with aloneness. Whether writing about farming, or photography, or the most gorgeous places in Slovenia, or the best gluten-free recipes, or how you healed from the loss of a loved one. You can be offering someone reading your thoughts and experience a new way of looking at life, a previously unheard of idea or place- to which they will now visit, a skill they hadn’t had before, a sense of feeling understood- in reading about how you navigated through pain which they too are experiencing.
—You have the opportunity to put the insights and message(s) you have garnered in life out into the world, for those to read and consider if they so choose. Exactly the way you gain and consider such from the writings of others which you read.
—You can assist with getting necessary conversations going, which hadn’t been prior (case in point: people like Lindy West on the topic of women in the media, Jean Kilbourne on the emotional dangers lurking in advertising for both men and women, Dr. William Davis on the topic of wheat and its dire impact on health, Bessel Van der Kolk on the topic of human trauma, the list going on).
—As a writer, you absolutely will impact and alter lives, whether its a handful, or hundreds. Most of this, in ways you will never know of. However, someone will read something you’ve written, and it will plant a seed. Shift a mindset or idea they may have had prior, or introduce an alternate way of thinking/living/being into the mind and life. How powerful, affirming, and awesome is that?
—You can help in connecting people, as well as creating new communities. If, say, you write about healthy eating, or trauma, or relationships, or travel, or farming, or knitting, or dog training, or nomadic living, people who feel inspired and moved by your insights and knowledge offered may find one another. There will be that “hey, me too” moment when someone recommends your book, article, recipe, or essay to a friend. You created that, began that chain. Or, added to and further the conversation.
Writers have a pretty dang cool, as well as necessary and significant job. One that has meaningful reverberations throughout both our society at large, as well as within the minds and hearts of individuals who read their (your) work. Do not for a second think that either striving toward such, or that claiming the work of being a writer is a “lowly,” embarrassing, or “not legit” or “good enough” job. It is. In numerous vital and far reaching ways. Being a writer is a crucial, relevant, and rocking job to our society and humanity at large.
For additional, connected reading and further inspiration on this topic:
How Reading Makes Your Life Richer
Why Being a Writer is the Coolest Job in the World