Such a thrilling title for a blog post, I know.
At face value, it speaks of a lack of imagination and… frankly, a loss for words. Where does one begin? What are you supposed to blog about on your very first day? Do you recount the story of your breakfast of trademarked crunchy cinnamon cereal, or begin an epic of the joys of writing and the struggle of deadlines that you haven’t had yet? Do you begin to artificially brand yourself in the hopes of getting freelance jobs? Money is important for sure, but in my naivety, I don’t want it to be the sole reason that I write this blog.
I am reminded of Ray Bradbury’s essay on the Joy of Writing, where he writes, “If you are writing without zest, without gusto, without love, without fun, you are only half a writer”. He goes on to say that a writer should be “excited”, where you pour your passion, your loves and hatreds on the page1. Remind yourself of the magic that you felt as a child, where riding the city bus was an adventure, and finding a lightning bug in the summer night was the discovery of a lifetime.
Excited. That’s what I felt when I began writing as a teenage fan-fiction writer, when I was taking my favorite video games and television shows, immortalizing my stories in the nerdiest reaches of the internet. When someone would read my work, whether a close friend or a stranger on the world wide web, I was ecstatic. Any comment I received, any praise, any criticism, I was happy enough that another human being decided to dedicate their time to read my work. And I still feel that today, if I’m honest with myself. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with taking pride in your work; sometimes you’re the only one who can pat yourself on the back, other times you could have throngs of people waiting to praise you for your latest and greatest work. So long as you never feel compelled to say, “I’ve finished, I have reached the top, and I am done creating”.
Never lose that sense of wonder- excitement is what I want to keep feeling as I continue work on my first novel, as I write original short stories in hopes of publication, and ultimately as I grow as a writer. I hope to always be able to remind myself the real reason I write: to share stories, and bring out feelings of excitement, suspense and fantasy, happiness and hope in either myself or others; preferably all of the above. Emotions that remind us we are human, and that the whole world is out there for us, chock-full of things to love and hate.
To wrap up this first blog post, I want to thank you for joining me on this crazy journey we call life, and whether you’re a writer or not, I hope you go out and find wonder in the smallest of places. Take a drive in the marvelous feat of engineering we call a car. Smell the flowers, and think of the love that their gardener put into seemingly insignificant plant life. Watch a flock of tiny birds forage for materials for nests, working together for the wellbeing of their kind.
Look at the world with new eyes, there’s magic out there just waiting for you to discover it.
1. Ray Bradbury, Zen in the Art of Writing (Santa Barbara: Joshua Odell Editions, 1994), 3-9.