So you can read my books

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


We write.

We strive.

We bleed the ink the page before us has been needing.

And for what?

That answer determines the manner in which we write :

hurried to meet some self-set goal


focused like light through the prism of our soul to cast the lights of our dreams

onto an imagined page some unknown reader will read, becoming lost in our imagined worlds :

"To get the right word in the right place is a rare achievement.

To condense the diffused light of a page of thought into the luminous flash of a single sentence,

is worthy to rank as a prize composition just by itself...

Anybody can have ideas--

the difficulty is to express them without squandering a quire of paper on an idea that ought to be reduced to one glittering paragraph."

- Mark Twain in a letter to Emeline Beach, 10 Feb 1868.

Will we be understood?

Thomas Bailey Aldrich, in a review of Emily Dickinson’s poetry published anonymously in the Atlantic Monthly, January, 1892 :

"But the incoherence and formlessness of her —

I don't know how to designate them — versicles are fatal….

An eccentric, dreamy, half-educated recluse in an out-of-the-way New England village (or anywhere else) cannot with impunity set at defiance the laws of gravitation and grammar."

Whose name is familiar to you : the poet's or the reviewer's?

Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all,

- Emily Dickinson

Have you noticed that much of the fiction out there has become more and more stylised, more and more cut off from ordinary feeling?

Is it that so many have come to regard everything in the world around us as fiction.... All the structures in it, flyovers and motorways, office blocks and factories, are all part of this enormous novel.

And since all those around us are mere backdrop in the fiction of our lives, they cease to become living, hurting, feeling individuals.

Ernest Hemingway wrote :

"Writing, at its best, is a lonely life.

Organizations for writers palliate the writer's loneliness, but I doubt if they improve his writing.

He grows in public stature as he sheds his loneliness and often his work deteriorates.

For he does his work alone and if he is a good enough writer he must face eternity, or the lack of it, each day.

You know that fiction is possibly the roughest trade of all in writing.

You do not have the reference, the old important reference.

You have the sheet of blank paper, the pencil, and the obligation to invent truer than things can be true.

You have to take what is not palpable and make it completely palpable and also have it seem normal and so that it can become a part of experience of the person who reads it."

Why do you write?

To touch one human heart?

To impress someone who may not even be alive, or if alive, does not see you as your dreams and soul truly are?

To make the bestseller lists?

To become wealthy and famous? To support yourself comfortably?

To tell the stories that burn to come out and sigh in relief as you type them into being?

Why we write determines how we write and how much pleasure we derive from it/

What do you think?


  1. Hi, Roland! It's been a along time. I hope you're doing fine, especially with your runs during the winter time. Eep!

    I write because it's pure connection time to my innerself. It's the time where I'm most freest. It gives me a sense of accomplishment, a sense of escapism, a sense of self-pureness. ;)

    Writing is very lonely, indeed. I'm so blessed that the Lord has led a wonderful friend to me and now we're partners in all things writerly! Wahoooooooooooo!

    ~Elizabeth :)

  2. Elizabeth : It has been a long time! I thought my posts might just have stopped interesting you. I am so glad you visited. I promise to return the visit. But I must be off to do a blood run in the night. Thanks for commenting.

    I'm glad you found a writing friend. Roland

  3. Thanks for the jog in our intentions why we write and that short reminder on HOPE. Sometimes we forget why we started something.. it's good to not lose the focus!

    ;) Silver

  4. I write because I want to know how the story ends, and since it starrted in my head there's only one way to find out.

  5. Thanks for the reminder. This is actaully something I think about everyday at least once.

    I write to quiet the voices in my head, my husband would make me take meds if I didn't. HA!

    No really, I write becuae I love it. The first time I wrote for pleasure it was like a baby taking their first breath-It made me feel alive.

    Thanks for the post.


  6. i sense some type of pain in your post.. i am not a writer.. i am not intelligent.. an average person from the void trying to read and understand your posts...i hope whatever it is.. you feel good and get all the success that is rightfully yours :)

  7. Flying High In The Sky : You are very perceptive. The pain is from various things : dysfunction in certain people with authority where I work without the maturity or emotional wellness to deal with it well. And of course, not knowing if I will ever get published and asking myself if that truly matters if I am proud of what I write. And you are hardly an average person, but you are a perceptive and caring one which makes you above average. Thanks.

    Jodi : I am with you. It is a pleasure to write my stories. My protagonists and their friends are my friends as well. I feel connected and living when I am writing their exploits and trials.

    Julie : Sometimes I know how the story ends. I just don't know how my MC gets there! But writing well is like a jazz musician hitting just the right riffs when he is in the groove.

    Silver : You're so right. Sometimes it's good to flick your eyes in your rearview mirror to catch a sense of where you started from so as to better understand why you started out in the first place. Thanks for writing.

  8. I write to express myself and I enjoy seeing the words in print.
    Happy Writing!

  9. I write because my characters cannot and their stories deserve to be told.

  10. What a thought provoking post, Roland. I guess I write because I have to...there's not stopping the stories in my head except to flesh them out in the real world.

    I don't think I could stop if I wanted to. Be safe out there on your runs!

  11. I decided to write fiction for money. After all, I wrote non-fiction for money. But I quickly noticed a major difference:

    Non-fiction writing, especially journalism, comes from the head. Fiction writing comes from the heart.

    Love this post. I so relate to everything you said so well.

  12. Terry : What a great point. Non-fiction does come from the head. And great fiction comes from the heart not the head.

    Raquel : Like you, the stories just come out of me. If I am never published, the adventures of my protagonists will go in, stored away in my computer.

    Heather : Yes, my characters push their way out of my imagination, too.

    Choices : I would love to see my stories in print. It may be that I only see them on my computer screen. I may turn out to be the cyber Emily Dickinson. There are worse fates, right?

    The Happy Whisk : It is fun, isn't it?

  13. Hi Roland. Indeed it is. This morning I had an hour before work and I tell you what, I had a grand old time fixing two scenes. So much to play with. Even if it doesn't work the first time, that only means I get to go back and play again.

    Happy Writing and I'll be back again soon.