Really, No *Really*, What The Heck Is Writing?

So many things in life are taken for granted. So much is automated. Even things like Love can suffer from a lack of proper awareness.

Ever walk down a street you’ve been down hundreds of times and wonder at some detail that seems like it just appeared yet has always been part of the landscape?

Perhaps I can do that for you in this post–give you a fresh vision of what the heck Writing really is.

I often find that checking an Etymology Dictionary gives me fresh perspectives on words and concepts that have become a bit stale. “Write” has roots that mean carve, scratch, cut, or paint.

Pardon me while a let the poetic side of my personality take control for a minute:

Authors can sometimes be said to carve a place for themselves in our culture.

There are also many writers barely scratching out a living.

Many wish they could cut a swath of recognition through the crowd of other writers.

And, our favorite writers are those who paint images in our minds with their words.

Anyone who ranks high on tests of left-brained activity is probably cringing at such a poor example of the application of word roots to an understanding of the meaning of writing.

You right-brained folks are probably creating other, equally-poetic examples 🙂

“You! Citizen! Step away from the keyboard!!”

Keyboards aren’t real good at carving, scratching, cutting, or painting. But the many former instruments of writing did all those things.

This attempt to go back a few steps so we can advance our understanding of writing has just reminded me of the many comments I see in the Twitter stream for #amwriting declaring, sometimes with boldness, sometimes with an excuse, that the Tweep is actually using a pen and paper for their WIP.

Just like my glee at saying my favorite word is “word”, I find an absurd pleasure in perusing written attempts at defining “writing”. Kind of like reciting the Kama Sutra while making love. Or, even better, putting two mirrors face to face and creating an infinite regress. And, possibly, best, the self-importance of this example of self-reference: I think the first word in this sentence is egotistical.

Seems like I’ve written myself into a corner: Carved a cul-de-sac, Scratched a non-existent itch, Cut off more than I can chew, Painted something non-representational…

Still, writing exists and I’m doing it now.

Your Feelings, Thoughts, Written Affidavits, Rants, or Explanations??
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