FINALLY!!!

Don’t get cute! I can hear you now: “Finally you’re posting something!” That’s besides the point though. I’ll get to that…

A few weeks ago, I was talking to a fellow blogger concerning her blog. While talking, I guess I must have made a comment describing myself as a writer. Her response was, “I wish I was comfortable enough to call myself a writer.” This comment threw me for a loop since I considered her to be a more established writer than myself. How could you be a writer, and not be comfortable calling yourself one? I guess the answer would be confidence… The fact that you actually believe you are a writer, and not just a person writing.

This conversation actually made me wonder if I had been giving myself too much credit.Read More »

Week 9 Recap

Well I believe an apology is in order. We’re into week 10 and I’m just getting to the Week 9 Recap.

Last week was short for posting. Material was abundant; time was not.

Monday, November 10, I worked all day Googling, YouTubing, theorizing, note taking and drafting, only to lose confidence in what I was writing about and going to bed. That was actually a first. There have been instances, where I substituted one essay for another, but I had not scrapped an idea and produced nothing. Nonetheless, I learned a lot and found out a to that I would not have otherwise known, so I count that as progress.

Tuesday, November 11, I wrote about the competitive attitudes of people. I believe most people’s competitive attitudes stem from being “better than”, rather than being the best. I feel as though any time you want to be better than a particular individual, that gives room for jealousy, rivalry, strife and contentions that would be avoided it your aim was to simply be the best at whatever it is that you do. There’s is nothing wrong with wanting to be the best, but let it not be directed at of someone else. That may sound like a contradiction, but I promise it’s not. Just a simple example, Venus and Serena both want to be the best, but they do not want invoke the pain of defeat on each other, but it’s would to happen because there can only be one 1st place (hopefully that sums it up a bit).

Friday, November 14, I tried to differentiate between arrogance and confidence. I finally decided that most of it lies within the intent of the statements and actions of the person in question. “I’m the best” from a confident person can simply mean just what he has said. However, that same statement — “I’m the best” — can mean, “I’m better than all of y’all” when spoken from an arrogant person. Confidence lies within the abilities and qualities of a person. Whereas arrogance feeds off the perceptions of abilities and qualities. None of these are stone facts, but I would like to think that I’m somewhere in the ballpark… I’m always open for correcting and another perspective.

Last night, November 15, I was motivated by an act of kindness between two groups of black men, to revisit the essay that I had scrapped on Monday night. Even though the outcome of both last night’s essay was completely different from what would have been written on Monday, I am convinced that what I concluded was the proper perspective. I am very hopeful for black American men and will not be convinced by the media that we are the lost cause that we have been portrayed to be. “The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much” (James 5:16, KJV). It is easy to apply scriptures like these to ourselves and the things we want, but while writing this particular essay, I realized that we should probably focus some of that prayer on those who can not, or do not know, to pray for themselves. It’s easier to start with those you can relate to first, but I love EVERYBODY! (Just in case I have a brother or sister from another ethnicity read this and feel as though I am negligent of others; I’m not) 🙂

Well, that was all for last week. I’m into week 10 and will probably be working some less stressful material this week. I encourage everyone to seek out their passion and go head first into it. The emotional liberty that writing in this fashion has granted me over the last few weeks has taken me by surprise. I believe the factor of sharing has broken through a barrier in my personality that has opened me up to freely be who I am apart from writing it. So if you ever see me in person, don’t be creeped out if I go mushy on you. 🙂 I’m sincerely enjoying the feedback and shares that I’ve been getting and just knowing that I may be helping someone in some way. Never take my word, completely though… Always bounce them off an elder, Pastor or a trusted person that you know before acting on anything. Most importantly, if it refers to the faith, make sure it checks out with the Bible, and if it does not, let me know and I will address it immediately.

With that being said, smile, enjoy your week, keep an open perspective and show compassion!

Schizophrenia and Writing

Writing is a socially acceptable form of schizophrenia.”  -E. L. Doctorow

As a writer, I see the validity in this quote and have to agree… To an extent, because I will not admit to schizophrenia in any form.

But…

Writing does expose much of who you truly are. Often your work will not be a reflection of the life you live on a daily basis. Even if it does reflect how you live, it will still advertise why you live the way you do. For example, I live a pretty quiet life. My words are few, but my opinions are strong. So if you take this combination, any of my acquaintances may be taken aback by some views that I have on racism, classism, sexism or any other ism. While I do not share my views and opinions on everything and with everyone, I do feel as though everyone should hold a view and opinion on everything; and if not everything, as much as possible.

I believe that most of the world’s problems come from simply an extreme excess of  talking and advising and not nearly enough listening and reasoning. This is not a new theory though; and is in fact a common one among writers and philosophers. Most of each profession will rarely be outspoken because they spend most of their time observing. So when they write, the belligerence and boldness in their tones and styles will starkly contrast the quiet persona that you may be more accustomed to. The writer, takes a topic in question, analyze it, writes it out, revises it and then publishes it for public reading. For that writing to relevant or influential, it may have to go against general perception. Whereas a banker may think the exact same thing, his job is not display his personal thoughts to the world. That can be an intimidating place to put yourself in.

There is a fear that accompanies writers that few other professions will experience. We put our thoughts, feelings, hopes, desires, dreams, fears and everything else that you can think of on paper for the world to indulge in; then await a sign of a approval. The first thing is to realize, is that there is no way everyone will agree with the way you view things; hence “Perspective” Park. The second thing is that the more truthful you are with yourself, the more you will speak out on those perspectives and views, no matter how personal they are to you. Then, the more you do that, the more your daily life and written life will start to merge; streamlining into an unashamed and complete individual, needing less approval now having more confidence.

The next time you ask a writer to share, consider that every written word belongs to a thought in that writer’s mind. Every page belongs to a day in his/her life. Each chapter uncovers another layer of what would have been unknown emotions and every character has a real face despite the words describing them. The way a writer values their works is indicative of the how much of themselves went into it. The more of themselves went into it, the harder it can be open up to sharing. Until that long bridge of fear can be crossed and the fact that the paper is fused with the life of the person does not matter, there will always reluctance.

I like to think of Ernest Hemingway, the author of The Old Man and the Sea. When he published that classic he had become an old man who simply enjoyed fishing, and from that came one of the greatest literary works in American history. But would he have been able to publish that as a young man? Would he have been comfortable displaying or could he even properly conveyed all of the insecurities and frailties which he had faced in aging? As a writer myself, I don’t think so. The emotions conveyed by any character in any story all come from a single person’s mind and heart, and usually that mind and heart has experienced what is being read. So even though society may accept, the schizophrenia that is a writer, the writer does not always readily accept the separation of life and literature. It takes years of practice before the two are one and the same, and it takes patience and courage to do so.