The Need to Write

Some people are writers. At least, they think they are. They write and write and write and when it all comes to an end, whatever it is they’ve written is absolute garbage. Just to be clear, this is simply my opinion. Although I tend to consider myself a bit of an expert, given the number of books I’ve read, owned, borrowed, studied, gifted, sold, or lost in my lifetime. Thousands. Maybe even tens of thousands.

Back to the writer thing.

And the people who think they are writers.

It puzzles me how poorly developed plots, cardboard characters, and unforgivable sentence structures find their way onto bookstore shelves and bestseller lists. Who makes these decisions? The brainless consumer, of course. The ones who wouldn’t know a well-written book if you smacked them in the head with it. And then you have the editors, agents and publishers who have convinced the general public that this is literature, because using the word literature excuses a multitude of literary sins.

When I find authors who can create a compelling story, characters who come alive, and have a firm grasp of Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style, I find myself weeping with relief that there are still such people in the world – people who respect the writer’s craft and wield their tools with precision. They are my heroes. The ones I strive to emulate in my own writing.

Oh, I’ve not reached any great measure of notoriety as a writer. Not yet. I’m sure that my work would be a treasure trove of pickings for the serious editor. But I don’t write for them. I don’t even write for the dim-witted multitudes who have unknowingly allowed themselves to be dumbed down by the declining standards of education. (Kudos to the teachers out there who raise the bar.)

I write for me.

Because I love to write.

To those who write and publish the poorly constructed stories – well – who am I to say that you are not writing what you need to write.

Just like me.

1 Comment

Filed under Writing

One response to “The Need to Write

  1. Chris Jordan

    I just ordered a copy of Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style. I know I am one of those writers who needs help honing my gift if I ever hope to be published one day!

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