‘I write to discover what I know’

By July 30, 2022 December 2nd, 2022 Mindset, Writing
Getting it out of your head can lead to surprising consequences
Write to clarify

I ’m not a writer.
I’m not allowed to be.
But enough about labels.

‘I write to discover what I know’ – Flannery O’Connor

 

This quote gives me permission to write.
To experiment and play with words which were someone else’s invention. Someone else’s toy.

Occasionally they fit.

On the beat.

Sometimes they fumble and…

fall.

The process is exciting.
Organic without an end.
The spill of a sentence.
A paragraph pond.

Okay, that doesn’t work.
But that’s fine.

When I was a small child I had a vivid dream. It was that all my knowledge would be in one place. In thoughts.

It was strange.
I didn’t know much at all at that point.

I only ever told my dad that same 1970s morning, but I held on to that fragmented idea.

At some point in the future I realised I could…
write it all down.

I still don’t know much.
But writing draws out the stuff which is hidden.

The experience of life.
The people, the places, the successes, the failures.
The ‘how-to-fix’ minutiae.
The manifestation of ideas.
Maybe even the occasional speck of wisdom.

And writing forces you to think.
To bind the words together.
Comprehensible.

Getting thoughts out of your head clears space and lends clarity – reviewable at a later date.
That is magic.

What comes out always surprises.
Good or bad.

And maybe it resonates with one person.
Who might write to discover what they know.
One thought at a time.

I’m not a writer.
But if I don’t write now, I never will.

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