On Writing and the 31WriteNow Process: The Words I Never Said
I have a writing problem. If something interests me in the least, I deem it worth words on screen, even if I know no one else cares. If something is gnawing at me- like how I got all into the last election- I will write about that. However, I will not write about issues that I have interest in if I feel that there is either too much coverage (Miley Cyrus Twerks Awfully) or nothing more to say (Miley Cyrus Did Some Kind of Dancing Really Bad and Doesn't Understand Racial Politics). For one, there's the timeliness issue. Your original thoughts are as valuable as the time at which they are shared. Stories fade out of the collective consciousness rather quickly. This is especially true stories that do not carry the weight that would result in additional follow up. A lot of writing is about striking while the iron is hot. Egypt will is still a major issue, but for now above the fold is reserved for Syria.
The other battle with writing (imo) is covering a topic that is too popular. Everyone's perspective is unique and everyone has their own angle, but sometimes there is no need to add to the conversation. There are experts in whatever field waiting to comment. Unless it has to do with television shows from the 90s, Civil War history, or something directly relating to my personal experience- my voice can be kept a bit more local. The facts are not changing from story to store, and so while I care- I actively decide not to write. From Trayvon Martin took over national headlines to the night when the Zimmerman verdict was released, I cared- but felt nothing worth writing at the moment due to the glut of meaningful and thought provoking commentary. The same with Miley Cyrus. In instances like those, my thoughts remain in emails and 140 characters. Some valid and insightful moments, but nothing that I feel adds to the overall conversation. In fact, most of the Miley coverage I read turned into the literary version of the adults on Charlie Brown.
And yet, I find items to write about and discuss and share in blog form and (hopefully more) reporting. I believe in the power of the written word, and never want to be dismissed for the words I never said.