Writing As Resistance

Posted by Rachel on May 17, 2017 in action, characters, current event, emotion, inspiration, plot, teaching, writing |

Since the feeling of helplessness regarding the state of affairs in our world continues to bother a lot of writers, I thought that’s what I’d talk about this week on my li’l ol’ blog here. This isn’t specific to any one problem or any single annoyance *cough*CheetoThunderfucker*coughs* since I feel like this could be applicable to many different situations we face.

The world and our lives aren’t perfect, but as artists, we definitely crave the desire to have an impact on our surroundings that might help move society in that direction. Inch ever closer to the elusive goal. But we may also feel as though our mode of helping is trivial and slow in comparison to other methods. Perhaps that’s true, but I argue it is also the most effective form of helping the world progress. That’s right, writing helps change lives and save lives. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again and again and again until everyone believes it.

Writing is resistance and although it may take months or years for your story to get out there, it’s purpose will prevail and continue to push for a greater tomorrow. Even more awe inspiring is that your story will ultimately outlive you and although you might be writing about an issue now, it could help people decades or even centuries later.

So if you’re frustrated with something, anything, about how people think, behave, or how society functions, write it in a book. I know this is sort of preaching to the choir but sometimes we feel addressing something sensitive or controversial might be an express route to failure when it’s far closer to the opposite. Think of all the greatest stories you’ve ever read. I’ll bet the aspect they share in common is that they called out something about life that you hadn’t seen talked about elsewhere before.

Maybe it was a bit of a risk, a little controversial at the time, or maybe even still to this day but it made an impact, didn’t it? You valued that story above others. These exceptional books took a chance to highlight the troubles the saw in the world not only to educate readers but get people thinking, to help people find a path to change.

And right now, in the depths of a lot of societal darkness, using your writing as resistance is a process that will not only help you through these tough times, but will help someone else on the other end of it all, too. Fight back, resist, tell it like it is. Don’t be afraid to write the hard books, and these certainly are hard, but the world has enough fear, your job is to give it hope.

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