The Resurgence of the Writer
I often get jealous when I picture Lord Byron and Mary Shelley sitting in a rented apartment in 1816 Geneva sharing stories, thoughts, ideas; picking at each other’s imaginations as the rain poured day after day encouraging the events of that fateful summer. The writing that resulted from those conversations would live on forever, and leave the writers revered for their influence on western literature.
Fast forward into the present century and a new renaissance is being fulfilled. While the internet has spawned social media, which has in turn made content a valued commodity, the writer has again been lifted near the top of the podium, their contributions to the new cyber world being essential to carrying information to the masses across boarders.
Complaints about the descent of the author is dubious, seeing that there are certainly more writers now than at any point in history, all contributing one book or blog post at a time. The difference being now the writer has control. They no longer have to be restricted to the morals or alliances of a publisher. There words can be shared with one click and read by an audience that crosses oceans with the movement of a finger.
But potentially having the ear of the world comes with a price. Today’s writer has to do much more than simply put fingers to keyboard to claim their place on the podium. They must understand how to navigate the multiple social media platforms and know which works best for them; they must be able to identify their audience and use marketing tactics to draw that audience to their work; and authors now must accept the responsibility of selling their own books, regardless of if they have a traditional publishing contract.
The prize for being master of these strategies is touching readers around the world with the stories they’ve created. Now the voice of the stay at home mother caring for her three children sharing her experiences through a carefully crafted blog is just as loud as the celebrated novelist of past centuries. Never has there been a time in history when this claim can be made before today.
The writer of today has evolved and with that evolution has jumped right back into the forefront of expression. This new opportunity has brought power back into the written word and writers today recognize their capacity for influence. So we celebrate the resurgence of the writer and the beginning of a new renaissance.
More writing from me @ kerncarter.com
Read my novella “Thoughts of a Fractured Soul,” here.