Writing for the sake of writing is ruining writers
Writing is an art. Like artists everywhere, writers are constantly urged to produce more of their art. But unlike a paintor or a sculptor, who must dig deep within their imaginations and craft their arts carefully and extraordinarily slowly, writers are expected and compelled to slap letters on a page for the sake of pure production and of getting one’s name out there.
It wasn’t always like this. Dickens published “A Tale of Two Cities” one chapter at a time, keeping each one exceedingly long because he got paid by the word. Prominent writers before the Internet generation would take off years in between producing completed works because it took time to explore themselves and the world around them to come up with something truly worthy of being said.
It’s sad, but it seems those days are over and that’s not a good thing for writing. While on the one hand it’s nice that anyone can open an account on Medium and declare oneself a “writer,” writers who produce little of immense quality are long forgotten, but those who can somehow muck together some thoughts on a page are deemed productive and relevant.
It’s not possible to produce good work when one is under constant pressure to produce something. In today’s interconnected world, he/she who writes frequently ranks higher on keywords and social media regardless of the profoundness and meaning of their work. That lone writer who produces what is inspiring and thought provoking will only become known by sheer coincidence or if doused in gasoline and lit on fire.
The quality of writing, whether it be journalism, blogs, or fiction is in decay due to an insatiable quench for new material from those who really don’t have that much to say on a given day. The forced expectations of saying something that isn’t truly heartfelt or has no purpose can never enable a true writer to create something that is worthy of the audience.
The constant expectation of writing by writers is preventing many talented writers from reaching their potential because they lack the time to focus on something that could actually become worthwhile.
That need to fuel a fire without fuel in the gas tank is exactly the reason I decided to write this post. Suckers!