#IWSG: Do the Write Thing

Hello, friends!  Welcome to this month’s meeting of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group, a blog hop created by Alex J. Cavanaugh and co-hosted this month by J Lenni Dorner, Janet Alcorn, PJ Colando, Jenni Enzor, and Diane Burton.  To learn more about this amazingly supportive group, click here!

One day, I told my muse what was happening in the news: all the bad stuff that had happened that day, and all the worse stuff that I feared was soon to come.  In response, my muse had only one thing to say: “Do the write thing.”

I tried to make my muse understand how frustrated I felt, how angry I’d become.  I tried explaining how fearful and helpless I was in the face of all these bad things happening in the world out there.  My muse nodded sagely as I talked; then finally, when I ran out of bitter words to say, my muse said again: “Do the write thing.”

She doesn’t understand, I thought, so I started up again.  I told my muse how there’s so much hatred and greed, so much war and disease.  The oppression is relentless, and at some point they (whoever “they” are this week) will even come after me!  How can I protect myself?  How can I protect others when the world is so cruel and heartless?

My muse was patient and kind as she looked me square in the eye, and she said again: “Do the write thing.  A well-told story can do more good than you think.  It can open a mind that was closed.  It can make people think, make them see from a new point of view.  A well-told story can inspire someone to do better, or it can give comfort to someone who needs comfort most.  At the very least, a story may give someone who’s suffering an escape—a brief respite—from all those troublesome things that keep happening in your human world.

“So the best thing you can do, both for yourself and for others, is set your fears and anxieties aside for a while, get your pen ready, and do the write thing.”

29 thoughts on “#IWSG: Do the Write Thing

  1. Great insight. I developed a case of the yips this year. Working on the third book in my new trilogy… planning to release all three later this summer… and suddenly, nothing worked. I began to fear I’d never finish the story. Thankfully, the dam burst and I’m on track again… doing the write thing 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  2. I love your muse. Great advice. It’s hard to write with so much happening–scary stuff. We can (and need) to immerse ourselves in our fictional world for a much-needed escape. Hope you have a good month.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. It seems like there are a bunch of things that are very hard to do when we’re feeling anxious and depressed, but have a high chance of making us feel better once we do them. Writing seems like that for a lot of us. (Reading about stuff outside of our contemporary situation (real or fictional) helps too, at least for me.)

    There’s also a lot to be said for trying to channel and harness those emotions. A lot of social commentary in fiction is inspired by authors feeling the same kinds of anger and frustration.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Oh yes, there is a lot to be said for that. I’ve read some really great stories lately that were very on point with their allegories and commentaries. I tried dabbling with that myself earlier this year, but I found that kind of writing is just not for me.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. It seems like there are different approaches to it. Some, like The Handmaid’s Tale, are much more on the nose than others. I’m totally with you on not finding that kind of writing for me. But think about the implicit social commentary in something like Avatar: The Last Airbender, the Studio Ghibli movies, or many of the Star Trek shows. Those are mostly adventure stories, but interlaced in the adventures are commentaries on discrimination, genocide, war, redemption, and many other topics.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. True. Very true. And I love the way Avatar, Star Trek, etc handle their social commentaries. I’m especially enjoying the way Strange New Worlds has tackled the issues of our day.

        It’s just not the way I like to write. Of course some social commentary gets into my stories whether I intend to put it there or not, but I prefer to not think about it while I’m writing and let it happen organically.

        And I’ve surprised myself, sometimes, with some of the messages that worked their way into my stories. Years back, I ended up changing religions and political parties in large part because my stories kept showing me that I didn’t really believe the things I thought I believed.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. I’ve read that it’s impossible to write any moderately long story without revealing yourself. (From what I’ve seen, it can be hard to avoid even with non-fiction.) I can definitely see that how that might include revealing to yourself. Interesting that it gave you those insights.

        Liked by 2 people

  4. That’s one of the best things us writers can do, is “Do the write thing.” I so many times feel like that’s what we were meant to do in the faces of the adversities (for lack of a better term) you mentioned above. People’s point of views can change after they’ve read a story especially if the story is well-written.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Thanks for an uplifting post. Sometimes our writing can seem futile in the face of so much hardship and cruelty. But any piece of positivity we can put out has a ripple effect and you don’t know where that can end up or how it can help someone.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Very behind with my reading & commenting atm. I love your muse. What a great play on words there, encouraging you to do right by writing. I tend to avoid items of a controversial nature when I blog, but there’s no doubt that weaving a message that’s important to you into your writing is most effective indeed. And I suspect satisfying too.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Excellent advice. It reminds me of the saying, “The pen is mightier than the sword.” Perhaps we can all contribute to our own peace of mind and help others in this chaotic world through the written word. I found your blog through a comment you left on Debs Despatches. It’s nice to “meet” you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s awesome. Debs is a really great person. I really do think writing can help. Even if it just gives people a little mental escape from reality, that can do a lot of good.


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