Friday, March 4, 2011 at 10:36am
This note is written mainly in response to my roommate’s claim that she hasn’t read anything I’ve ever written. I should be honest: reading this will be of no real use to you. It will not save the world, it will not change your life, and it will not even last an hour in your mind. I’m simply writing for the same reason I’ve always been writing: I love it.
Imagine our hearts were sponges; the more it takes in, the heavier it gets until it can no longer carry itself. The only way to return to normal is to squeeze out the weight that it carries. As humans, we either cry or bleed. When I am writing, I do both.
Fifth grade was the year when I decided I loved writing, and that I would like to be a writer. It was a silly classroom essay. The policy at the time was that 7/10 was the highest score an essay could achieve. My teacher found the essays of two students to be exceptional, so she gave each one half a mark extra. One of those students was me.
The other student later became my rival, and then my friend. Today he is almost family, my idol in intellect and genius, still my rival but to a much lesser extent, and a friend who brings that dream back to me when it starts to drift away. We plan to coauthor a book someday. So I guess this is for you, couz, and for our dreams together. I miss you every time I feel less of the writer I always thought I was.
Know that how I write is a lot different from how I speak, if I manage to really speak at all. The people who get the best view of my heart are those who hear me speak in all ways: when I’m talking nonsense, when I’m talking serious, when I’m talking through writing, and when I’m talking with no words at all. Several names come to mind, but there is one obvious favorite.
Because she knows me better than anyone does, often even better than I know myself. After spending five years of high school together, during which she took in my daily dose of drama and mood swings, her role in my life can only be intact and irreplaceable. She doesn’t know it, but she inspires my writing. I always imagine her reading, wonder what she would say or how she would feel, and I write accordingly. It would mean a lot to me to make her proud of me.
I’ve come a long way from that fifth grade essay. I also haven’t gone anywhere at all. There’s no way to tell myself if I’ve improved or not since I don’t even know what the standard of “good” is. My guides and judges were a series of fussy English teachers in high school, each having her own idea of an A+ essay. That never got me anywhere.
My dreams are right there in front of me while they’re also so far away. I don’t know where I’m going as a writer, so much less how to get there. I’m just like this single-draft essay which has no real introduction, body or conclusion. Nothing but a mess of thoughts strung together with careful grammar.
I have no history of experiences other than several blogs and Facebook notes (which don’t count). All I have is my gut instinct, a heart to pour out and, most of all, a love for my art which is writing. And sometimes I feel like that’s enough.
So here’s to my lovely roomie whose one statement brought this whole page of words out of me. Now you’ve met the writer in me.