Friday, March 27, 2015

For the Love of Writing

Ever wonder why we do what we do?  I know I have.

What makes one person to be an accountant, or another an auto mechanic, or another person becomes a music teacher, or even another to become an undertaker?  To each one a special niche in life is given, found, or even carved out of the unknown.  We do what we do.  Don’t we?

As for writing, there are many reasons we do what we do as writers.  For me I know it’s often cathartic.  It’s a Platform as Michael Hyatt says.  Or maybe it’s a combination of both – catharsis and platform all rolled into one.

Recently it came to mind that I’ve written for three reasons.  Maybe a few more, but if I’m honest as a writer, these are three reasons I have to hold up as cause and motivation for doing what I love to do.

Firstly, I write because of Passion.  Passion for writing, passion for God, passion for the human drama, passion for justice, passion for humor, passion for relationships, passion for creativity in verse and thought.  But nonetheless Passion and I believe that is good – as cause and motivation.

When you look up the definition of Passion there’s quite a list of understandings that drive the meaning of the word and it’s use.  I guess each of us has to choose which particular definition we will use as we decide why we do what we do.  But regardless of which specific definition we choose, Passion is a MUST for life, relationships and especially for writing.

Secondly, I’ve written because of Pain.  And likely I’ll do it again.  But I’ve heard it said of great and influential writers, and even of inventors and entrepreneurs, that pain and conflict often drive these people to express and discover things that benefit more than just themselves.

Study a good Storyline.  Somewhere in the elements of the story there is conflict, pain, crisis, goals and things to overcome.  And as the characters of the story rise to overcome, they are driven by the ouches of life, and ultimately they find the joy and refreshment of victory over some rugged and low spots life has brought them.

I believe Pain is at the core of God’s love for us.  A Pain that came from our decision to be away from Him doing our own thing, so He did something to overcome that pain; He offered His own pain for our gain.

Pain makes us think about things differently.  Pain causes us to have a passion to escape and abate the vicious ouches life tends to puts on us.  Pain is the analog of pleasure.  And without both we have no esoteric point of reference to understand life and a relationship with God and others.

So Pain can be a great motivator in the life of a writer.

But thirdly, I’ve written because of Poison.  Poisons that came from the lies I’ve believe to be true about myself, God and others.  Poison is the lies that have been plied against my soul and the Truth of God.  And the problem with poison as a motive for writing is it always does just that – it poisons someone.  Oh I may think I’m just being honest, but in reality I’m drinking in and sharing a deadly gall.  And all in the name of being pithy, eloquent and even brutally honest; and isn’t honesty the best policy?

I wanted to point out the gravity of writing with a poison pen.  And I wanted to confess my use of such poison in my writing over the years.

Passion, Pain and Poison tend to find their way into all of our writing from time to time.  The real challenge for me is to avoid the use of poison as a vindictive and vengeful forum of expression.  

Please forgive me if my pen has ever shot poison in your direction.  It was really meant for me.  I just never had the courage to give it over to God.  I never really trusted that He kept all the books, or that He could be trusted to make all things right.

So I’ve asked God to forgive me.  And He has.  And now I ask you to forgive me.  Poison must never be my cause and motive for writing – ever again.