Monday, July 26, 2010

The Reason, My Reason


I always wondered if I should ever give up. I always wondered what would happen if I had just given up on writing. If I forgot all that I learned, dumped my dreams into the trash, silenced the voices in my mind, and became an average person in this world. A man who worked from 9 A.M. to 5 P.M. Then, would my life be any easier? Would the voices just cease to exist? Would my hand stop writing? Would I be able to sleep soundly at night?

I looked at an endless amount of blank pages and the reflection on the laptop screen of the characters that stood behind me. I questioned myself if I really am cut out for this. I question my entire life. Those four or five years when I told everybody that I would make a name for myself and be a great writer.

Was I lying to them? Was I lying to myself?

I then recalled a conversation I had with my friend a few days ago.


“Has there ever been a book that changed your life?” I remembered asking my friend.

“A book that’s changed my life?” he chuckled. “No.”

That word stamped forever in my mind made me begin to question why I wrote. Doctors save lives, don’t they? Lawyers prove the innocent, don’t they? Scientists invent the newest gadgets, don’t they? What do writers do?

“Writers create false realities,” my friend told me as he continued the topic of why writers weren’t as important to the world as engineers, doctors, lawyers, etc.

“False realities?” My eyes twitched.

“Yup. They create those wonderlands, Narnia, and all that good stuff. They provide us an escape from our daily lives. They twist the truth and make it their own. Writers are dying in this world. Fiction is dying. Look at movies and the internet. Books won’t exist soon. Who reads nowadays? Who actually picks up a book?”

“I still do. I still believe. I still believe in those escapes.” I slammed my fist on the table. “Do you know why?”

“Why what, Vatche?”

“Do you know why I became a writer?”

“Something about immortality, right?” He couldn’t stand to see me irritated even the slightest bit, so he turned his face away.

“That was before. My reason has changed over the years though. You’re right. Writers provide an escape and I want to be that avenue of escape for my readers. Books were a blessing in my life. They took me away every time my parents fought. They took me away every time I felt lonely. They took me away whenever I needed that escape hatch. I want to give that escape to my readers. I want my readers to know that they have a friend left in the world that will listen. I will be their friend. My books will touch their hearts. I will even grab yours. I will make a book someday that’ll change even your life.”

“Doubt it,” my friend looked at my bold, brown eyes.

“I will.” I sat back down and tried to control myself. All the memories of other friends and people, who told me that being a writer was a useless occupation, began to run through my mind. I remembered all the discussions and arguments. I couldn’t stop the words. I couldn’t control my heart’s racing speed. I couldn’t control anything until I closed my eyes and wished it all to stop. For that one instant, I heard what I needed to hear.

I heard the turning of a page and I smiled.

“What’s wrong?”

“Tell me something. What’s right?” I questioned him back.

He sat and didn’t know how to answer.

“Exactly. Writers make you think in ways you never thought possible. Sure, I would be dead to some, never heard by others, but too a very few I would be there for them. I would have made their fantasies and dreams come alive. I would make them stronger. Doctors save lives. Lawyers protect the innocent. Scientists invent. Writers write to make people think. How else would we be able to communicate if we couldn’t write? Sure, the book is probably dying, but the text isn’t. You still read articles online, don’t you?”

“That’s...true,” he mumbled.

“So, there’s my answer to you. I write to make people think. I give those people hope. I give those people three-dimensional characters. I give them that and an escape.” I smiled the biggest smile of my life. I finally found my true reason for writing. It wasn’t immortality, but to make people think and to give them hope.

“That’s my reason.”

“That’s a damn, good reason.” My friend didn’t bother to look into the fire of my eyes. That one page that was flipped was all I needed to hear to reignite the flame that burned in my soul.

People aren’t done with reading just yet.

Have you ever fought for something you believed in? If so, what was it? Did you succeed? If you failed, did you learn from your failure? 

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

"Tell me something. What's right?" LMFAO worst comeback ever.


-Rafi

The English Writer said...

I hope people will never stop reading! Well, at least I hope I never do. You know I tremble with frustration when someone says to me "I don;t really read that much", why?? Life is hard, life is difficult, and as much as I write to escape, I also read to escape! Great post, thank you, Karen.

Cruella Collett said...

I definitely don't believe people are done with reading yet. And I think it is great that there are people out there who are willing to provide the readers with books to read!

In the end, though, I write because I can't help it. Even if nobody would ever read what I wrote, I still think I couldn't give it up. Could you *really* have quit if you had decided to do so?

Jemi Fraser said...

Story telling is part of the human experience. There are many ways to tell those stories, but they will always exist. People need them. Being human means stretching for more, wondering why and making choices. All of that is reflected in books.

The Words Crafter said...

Most of my co-workers are avid readers. My co-teacher struggles, but she still reads. I cannot imagine a world without books. *shudder* I struggle mostly with myself and unlearning what was hammered into my psyche as a child....you guys out there in blog-land are my support and I appreciate everything that entails more than you could know.

BTW-I had goose bumps and tears as I read your post. I could feel your struggle, your doubt, and your passion. I'm glad you have a friend who will push you and make you fight for your dream.

Tabitha Bird said...

Don't give up. People are NOT done with reading yet. As long as their are people writers will be in demand :)

Anonymous said...

Ignore my boyfriend. -squints at Rafi-

<3

Follow your dreams, Vatche!

-Mel

Carolyn V. said...

No one has ever confronted me yet. But I have had friends who have had the experience.

But you are right. Writers do...and will continue to make lives better, help kids through hard times and even change lives. I totally believe in it.

Writers are awesome. Loved the post Vatche! =)

Nicole MacDonald said...

Do it because you love it. Otherwise don't do it

Falen (Sarah) said...

i work a 9-5 job. Mostly because i like money. It makes the writing more difficult, but it's nice having a goal.
Also i gave up on writing for a few years, more or less. Life went on the same as it always had until i remembered that i wanted to be published, and i wanted it bad enough to put in the work.

K.M. Weiland said...

Thanks for sharing this! Without art, a society ceases to breathe. Without art, we stagnate. The world would be a very small place if we were all forced to live in only our own worlds. But thanks to books, movies, music, and paintings, the horizons are boundless.

Shadow said...

excellent! and i believe in sharing that escape of one's imagination with others! don't ever stop writing!!!

WritingNut said...

I don't think people will ever be done with reading - whatever form it may be, we'll always be doing it.

Don't give up - if you don't want that 9 - 5 job, keep pushing for your dream, and don't let anyone tell you any differently.

Vatche said...

Rafi, I try my best with comebacks, but I'm not a quick thinker like you. You're great when it comes to comebacks, but I'm still trying my best here! :P

Vatche said...

Hey, The English Writer (Karen)!

I get sort of frustrated when people say that they don't read either. I mean seriously why not? I write to escape and read to escape, as well.

I know that we won't stop reading for a long time, so there's no need to give up hope in it!

Write on and escape!

Vatche said...

Hello, Cruella!

I don't think books will die anytime soon, despite what my friend says. I'm also glad that people are still writing and providing us with more stuff to read. :D

I don't think I could ever quit writing. Sure, I've had my doubts about it, but never in my mind have I gone full-force and said, "Forget it. I quit!" I would never give up. Never!

So, write on and never stop!

Vatche said...

Hey, Jemi!

That was very beautifully put. You are absolutely correct that story telling is just part of human experience and it will never die, never disappear. All of our human experiences and stories are then put into these works and they will live for a long time.

Write on and put your stories out into the world!

Vatche said...

Hello, The Words Crafter!

First of all, thank you for your kind, kind, super-kind words. I always love reading your comments because they always inspire me to write better. Your words of encouragement are always great to read.

Okay, next...I cannot think of a world without books either. It would be a very dark, dark world. Books are a big part of my life!

So, write on, read on, and thank you!

Vatche said...

Hey, Tabitha!

You're definitely right. No one is done reading just yet. We have yet to discover telepathy! So, as long as there are readers, there are writers as well.

Write on and read on! :D

Vatche said...

Mel, I will definitely follow my dreams, through and through. So, no worries there! I will try to ignore Rafi, but it's a hard job since he's my best friend and all.

Love you, too!

Vatche said...

Hey, Carolyn!

Writers have seriously changed my life with their books. Without their worlds and their characters, I don't know what I would have turned out to be today. Writers are most definitely awesome.

I'm glad you enjoyed the post and write on! :)

Vatche said...

Hello, Falen!

I understand working a 9-5 job for the pay, because we all got to get money and food on the table somehow. I guess, I want to get most of my money from writing, but there's only a small chance of that happening.

It sucks that you gave up your writing, but also it's good that you got back to it. So, write on and don't ever give up on your dreams!

Vatche said...

Hey, Nicole!

You're right! If I love it, I should do it with all my heart. If anyone says different, I should not care. I try to stick to this, but at times I forget.

Write on!

Vatche said...

What's up, K.M. Weiland?

That's a beautiful and truthful way of putting it. You're right, that if we only lived in our own worlds that life would be pretty boring. With movies, books, TV, and whatnot, our boundaries and imaginations are boundless. Because stories exist, we are able to create these worlds. I love all forms of art, because they paint the pictures in our minds and make us think.

Write on and think on!

Vatche said...

Hello, Shadow!

I believe in sharing that escape, as well! I will never stop writing, because my fingers apparently have minds of their own now. They land on the keyboard and type by themselves practically.

Write on and never stop!

Vatche said...

Hey, Writing Nut!

I will keep pushing for my dream no matter what. I have the stubbornness of a bull really. I will just ignore what others tell me and keep on pushing for that dream. I can't really imagine myself working a 9-5 job. It's just not me, I guess.

Write on and keep pushing the dream!

WINDOWLAD said...

...once a writer, forever a writer.... as for me... my passion was on poetry... i write co'z i want my thoughts to be heard... i write co'z i want others be inspired... i write co'z i want change - a reformation.... and i did all of those via poetry... i do believe, though we have different style in writing, that our mission was just the same - to influence others in a positive way... never let anyone make you feel that you don't deserve what you want... co'z your are worthy of your happiness, your passion... what others say doesn't really change anything... it doesn't change you... unless you let it... keep writing brother - don't waste the gift!!!(^^)

..BTW, i'm new here.. i find many interestin' things in here... and i would love to be updated!!!:)

Blessings!!!:)

>Kelvin

Bluestocking said...

I found it interesting that you brought up the whole immortality thing. I do think there is a part of every writer who wants to create something so wonderful that their name will live on despite the passage of time. I think in today's day and age we are more cognizant than ever of our frailty and limited time on earth, hence the need to write, to produce, to snatch up that 15 minutes of fame and hold on tight to validate our existences. It's unrealistic perhaps, but very human.

Oh, and DON'T GIVE UP! :)

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