On Giving Something Back

Inancienttimespeopleusedtowritewithoutspacesbetweenwords. Today we add pauses between our words – we make reading easy. There was a time when scribes copied books by hand, before the printing press was invented, when most people could not read or write. Today we can share our writing with a global audience in minutes. Isn’t it then a pity not to write something at least every now and then and share it with others?

Sometimes, following a comment or a link that you people leave here, I end up on a blog that has not been updated in years, or that has been closed. Many of you read but do not write. I think I can understand why. To keep on writing when you don’t have to is not easy.

What almost all of us do every day though is to read. We read things online, book, papers, posters, news. We have an innate need to know things. We are curious. We want to learn more.

Today not only our sentences, but also our lives are more fragmented — we divide our lives between screens, books, rooms, and travel destinations. We have multiple identities, multiple life stories — one we tell our friends, one we tell our loves, one we tell ourselves. Modern life allows us to be nothing and everything at the same time. To hide from the world and in that hiding, to be one with it. To be readers.

How do we give something back to all the wonderful reading that others have given us? Do we share their writing? Do we buy their books? Do we make others read it?

All of that, of course, but there’s an even better way to pay them back — by writing something ourselves. When we can, how we can.

Writing is an act of awakening. Our conscience awakens as we write, and as others read our writing, their conscience awakens, too. Our writing is a reflection both of who we are and of who we may become. Those of us who through some path or other discover the world of blogging, may as well use this opportunity to share ourselves with the world.

The ease with which we can write and publish online today is wonderful. We can share our thoughts and lives, and in the process, come to a deeper understanding of ourselves.

Every word that we write and that is read passes through another person, affects them in a way. It can bring them a sense of calm, it can distract them from their worries, it can trigger a chain of thoughts and ideas.

So, write posts, write text messages, write post-it notes, write on the walls, write whatever you feel like writing.

So long as we write, we will be deeply alive.

14 thoughts on “On Giving Something Back

  1. This is the beautiful writing that caught my eye not so long ago…I love to read words that not only call to me but inspire me to do better and today is one of those days, Vincent!

  2. I am going to share your article with a young poet I know.
    Thank you for this piece. I am inspired to write with more purpose and meaning. In the beginning, I guess ‘you’ feel like what ‘you’ express is not that ‘meaningful?’ Every now and then, I remember that what I think of as ordinary is not for someone else. I live on a farm and not everyone does. That’s something I write about or my obsession with food. Thanks for the ‘wake-up.’

  3. Thank you for your blogs, I enjoy reading them. You are right– I’ve been wanting to start writing but I’m afraid I may not be able to sustain it.

  4. This is very powerful, and meaningful to me. I think that the best thing that a writer can do is to inspire others to communicate their ideas. Everyone has a different way in which they say something. This seems to be how Literature grows–becoming broader, more intricate, more universally beautiful.
    I think that people are writing increasingly more advanced and deep stories, with more complicated characters and themes, influencing more and more writers. In history, Fantasy seems to have only recently become significant. Perhaps it took such a while, because of a lack of writers to influence other writers with their work. Perhaps many thoughts and emotions were not expressed. And the understanding of those thoughts and emotions was not advanced. Humanity has evolved to have a powerful imagination. There are so many people writing today. Perhaps people intellectually advanced to recognise and understand the importance of imagining.

  5. Beautifully written. Reminds me of this Charlie Kaufman quote.
    “Say who you are, really say it in your life and in your work. Tell someone out there who is lost, someone not yet born, someone who won’t be born for 500 years. Your writing will be a record of your time. It can’t help but be that. But more importantly, if you’re honest about who you are, you’ll help that person be less lonely in their world because that person will recognise him or herself in you and that will give them hope.”

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