There’s this feeling I get when I’m putting words on a page. Do you feel it too? It’s hard to explain, other than it simply brings a smile to my face, a feeling of sublime satisfaction. The best is that while I’m at it, I’m deeply thankful for my existence, and I wouldn’t want to be doing anything else.
For that reason, I can’t remember a moment in my life during which I wasn’t writing. I was inspired to do so because the act of writing helped me feel closer to something beautiful and much larger than myself. But, as I explain here, I didn’t always have the courage to show my work to anyone else. And, from what I’ve been learning recently, many people have that problem. Just a few of the excuses I would make for my self-censorship: no one wants to be bothered with my trivial thoughts, I’m just another kid, then preteen, then teenager, and now, young woman, spilling her guts on a page, and the strongest: it’s not good enough anyway.
The break from self-censorship came in January 2014, although it would take a few months to form into Of Poets & Heartbreakers. How did it happen, you ask?
We’re driving in my friend’s car, I’m spilling my love life to her, and she interrupts,
“Clara, stop, this is such blog material.”
And I look at her, confused, “What?”
“Yeah, I read these highly addictive fiction blogs about dating and love and I swear, your life right now could be one of them.”
I roll my eyes. She doesn’t know two things. One, I already like writing and do it in my spare time, and two, that I absolutely detest bloggers. You see, I grew up reading the ‘masters’, admiring the likes of Voltaire, Moliere, and Camus, the list goes on. From my perspective, how could any normal mortal be so self-centered as to think that others had time and interest to read their blog posts, over the millions of established -and better- writers out there, past and present?
But the idea was like a bug that I couldn’t shoo away. It dawned on me that if I tried it out, it would be my chance to get feedback from readers and learn the how to write with a steady rhythm. Thus emerged Of Poets & Heartbreakers.
In tribute to the friend who pushed and motivated me to start writing for others, my pen name was “Sandy” until just recently, when I decided I’d publish a two volume novel form of the story, and that I’d begin this site.
And here comes the surprise. Although I started hoping I’d get some feedback on writing, I never thought I’d find a new source of inspiration to something I already felt was an important part of who I was. In fact, never in my imagination did I receive such kind comments or even the smallest following.
Way in the beginning, I remember reading this comment while walking home from work. I had to stop on the sidewalk to re-read it various times, and called my friend, almost in tears.
The reader below is very dear to me, as she was one of the first to start following the story.
You can probably tell I was in cloud nine after this one.
And, something very blogger-y, I’ve also become friends with other bloggers whose work I admire.
Even my Instagram account has also been a source of motivation. This, from just last week, almost had me in tears.
I could go on with this self-indulgence, but that’s not the point. The point is that you too can get inspiration from sharing your work, and that you’ll never know how good your art might be, unless you give it chance to shine. This work you might not like today will grow and improve as your continue practices.
Importantly, after more than one and a half years, I have to admit that I was wrong about bloggers. We are just as self-centered as anyone else, but believe that there’s a tiny speck of a possibility that our work will be read and appreciated. Above all, I’m thankful that others see that too, and give us a chance.
So today, I think it’s far to say that I have added a second source of inspiration to writing: you. Today, the passion to write in the first place has remained strong, but I also do it to talk to people, to share common and human truths with them, and to hopefully give others inspiration to express themselves as well.
So, two words to the people who decide to put even a few minutes into reading my work: thank you. A double thank you to those that are kind enough to also tell me how they feel about it. Thank you for giving me the gift of inspiration where I thought there was none at all. If you like to write, what are you waiting for? Go ahead and blow us away with what you can do!
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