If poetry is an idea which is often thought, but never so well expressed, I would say today’s bloggers are poets and are producing new works which are delivering content, style and number as never before. My introduction to writing, decades ago, required writers to engage in an obstacle course of primitive “technology” of research in the Card Catalogue at the library, 3 x 5 index cards, mechanical typewriters, plain paper (no corrections) and a hard cover dictionary and thesaurus. Now we are so blessed with word processors, spell check, on-line search engines, publication templates and electronic distribution, all one has to do is open one’s laptop and start punching the keyboard. After a rough draft and several edits and voila, one is a published writer. Magically, a reader (usually a bird-of-a-feather, author) responds on-line, with encouragement. They say to me, and I say to you: “Come on in, the water’s fine,!” Writing is the other side of the coin of reading. The better you read, the better you will write. The more you write, the more you will get from you reading.
In my recent post: “Why You Should Write”(1): I quoted authors who encouraged all of us to write everyday and challenged us to write well and write to learn. A few days ago, I wrote: “Writing and the Butterfly”(2) discussing the hurdles an author must clear to find their potential readers. More recently I published “Not Waiting for the Echo”.(3) in which I discussed the value of messages which seem to have no response. My conclusion: unanswered messages are no less valuable. I also noted that our written message may later be found as a coin lost in the grass.
i am often reminded that the value of an activity may not be primarily to make a product. The process is the product. It may be a valuable ritual. I hope everyone has participated in The Japanese Tea Ceremony. The purpose of these performances is not to get a cup of tea to quince one’s thirst, but to participate in beauty-in-action.
I strongly encourage everyone to obtain William Zinnser’s cornerstone book: “Writing to Learn” which I used for a textbook for many years.(4) After consuming “Writing to Learn”, then next get Zinsser’s “On Writing Well” (5) which has been the companion of many for years
I suggest that we now have a wonderful platform and great tools to express ourselves. Let’s do it. 30
(4) Zinsser, William, “Writing to Learn”, 1993
(5) Zinsser, William, “On Writing Well” 2006