Do you ever read someone else’s writing and think: Why didn’t I think of that!?!
It happens to me all the time!
Have you ever read someone else’s writing and thought: I could have done that way better!
Yeah, me neither…
Most people who have a passion for the arts have someone they look up to. An artist who inspired them to become an artist themselves. Maybe it’s Leonarde Da Vinci. Or Virginia Woolf. Maybe they look up to Meryl Streep. Or Steven Spielberg.
I knew I wanted to be a writer from the day I was born. I’ve always loved telling stories. I can spend hours creating worlds of my own. The possibilities are endless.
Maybe that’s why I’m such a great liar.
We’ll go into that some other time.
Maybe it’s just the way my brain works. Making life more interesting than it actually is.
I don’t want to be the next Hemingway, Angelou, Kafka, Rowling or Austen. Don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy their writing and I’m fascinated by their talent with words. I just don’t want to try to be like them. I want to tell my own stories, using my words instead of theirs. I will never be able to write what they wrote. Trying to recreate their stories would be an insult to their genius.
It’s not like cooking where you follow a recipe. I mean, isn’t that the true meaning of art, revealing your own imagination?
That’s probably why I had such a hard time being a literary student. Always talking about trying to find the meaning of the author, like it’s somehow hidden within the text underneath all the words. For me, the meaning isn’t hidden. It’s not some mysterious extra layer that can be found. The meaning is right there in front of you. It’s in the words on the page, not the words behind the words. If that even makes sense.
If I’m lucky enough to one day have written words that will be read by students, I hope they will just enjoy the story instead of going on an adventure for some deeper meaning. I can tell you now, it’s not there. That deeper meaning you will find, has nothing to do with me or my intentions. That deeper meaning is your own. It’s your own creation. It’s yours! Don’t waste it on someone as simple as me. I just wrote the words to tell a story. The story is my art. The meaning within? That’s your imagination creating a story of its own.