Writing should never be “safe”. It’s not meant to be. It doesn’t have to be perfect, cookie-cutter. It’s meant to break the rules, to elicit emotions.
To change someone else’s viewpoint, to open their eyes, to reach out through that page as a writer and to grab the attention and the heart of your reader, it can never be anything less, or you risk something vital being lost in the translation that happens between the person who first dreamed up the writing, then translated it from what they saw in their head onto paper (or computer), and the interpretation of the reader when they read it.
And that’s of course, not taking into account those of us who have to go through editing, publishing, republishing before the work gets out to whomever you choose to share it with.
It all begins with a thought, an idea– a flash in the dark that catches the writer’s attention and holds it for a second.
That second is all it takes to spark an idea in our minds, and suddenly, worlds are born, heroes are born, grow up, go to battle, marry, have children, and die old men and women.
And it all happens in the flash of a second.
Each and every story you write shines a spotlight on the characters that inhabit your mental stage– whether they’re human, cyborg, robot, hybrids, aliens, animals, rocks with wings that fart rainbow-colored sparkles.
The point is, for a moment, you’re shining a spotlight on something, on someone. When you’re writing a story, poem, song, making a painting, a sculpture, taking a photograph–
You found something that caught your attention long enough for you to want to draw someone else’s attention to it, so that you can turn around and share in that moment, and that subject matter with someone else in turn, so you pour your heart and soul into your craft, putting in time and effort and work– sweating, bleeding, creating– and all the while feeling this underlying need to share your work with others.
For a moment, when it’s seen, read, viewed, listened to, you’re sharing that moment in time with another human being, and whether they’re standing in the room with you and you can see the expression on their face, or whether they’re half a world away, seeing your work on the television, hearing it on the radio, seeing it on the computer or in a magazine, in a book– they are sharing that moment with you.
And it all began with that spark of inspiration that ignited a spark of creation in your brain.
It began in excitement and epiphany and panic as you ran headlong to find paper, to find drawing tools, a camera, your laptop– whatever tools you use to create whatever form of expression you use to express how you feel.
It began with feeling. And no matter how many filters and layers and edits it goes through, it should never become anything less.