Sunday, October 4, 2009

I'm a Writer. Hear Me Roar

"Our greatest fear is not that we are inadequate. It is that we are powerful beyond measure."

As much as I'd like to claim I wrote the above words, the credit belongs to Marianne Williamson, and I only discovered them recently, when I saw them written in bold, blue paint on a wall on what I can only describe as some of the most interesting walls I believe I shall ever see. This quote, of all the things written on that wall, struck my fancy.

We, as writers, are incredibly powerful. We build whole worlds in our mind, give birth to whole populations with out fingertips, and change whole destinies with our hearts. When we set out to write a story, there is nothing we cannot do. The most tremendous things have happened because writers have had a dream. As O'Shaughnessy wrote, "We are the music makers, and we are the dreamers of dreams."

We are incredibly powerful. But how much of that power to we tap into? The answer cannot be all of it. We toss aside ideas for being 'too unconventional.' Other ideas are discarded as 'too mainstream' or 'too trite.' We belittle our words as they spill forth, erase them, cross them out, delete them on the grounds that they are not 'good enough.' We claim that we can do better, but we censor ourselves if we try.

We can take that which is old and make it new again. We can take what is inelegant and make it artful. We have that power within us. We just need to tap into it. We just need to be willing to draw it out and let it work its magic on our words. Would it be so bad, so scary to put it all out there, no blocks?

I'm not saying that nothing requires polishing or editing or honing to make it the best it can be, that nothing done after we've released all we can do will ever need to be changed, but I think we shouldn't stifle ourselves. We shouldn't shut ourselves down, put ourselves down. We should help ourselves grow.

Because we are powerful beyond measure.


  1. I agree. It's just so hard when that self-doubt kicks in. Didn't Willy Wonka make a candy can give us never-ending confidence? ;)

  2. KAH -- If he did, he never told me about it. But when he does, if you score an early batch, you should totally share. :D

  3. I totally agree with you here. We try to fit into the mold we writers are supposed to, but when it starts stifling us, it just brings our confidence down. Well said.

  4. LW -- Thanks. I recommend the Creative Genius mold. It allows you the freedom to do whatever you want with your writing. :D