On writing

I am completely, totally, utterly infatuated with reading. I love reading.

I write to please myself, I write to imagine a life as a person whose works are enjoyed and celebrated. But do I necessarily want that life? Or is it simply fun to ponder? Because I struggle to be as devoted to writing as I am to reading what other people have to say. I don’t believe this is because I do not value my own opinions, or I wouldn’t journal and blog. I believe this is because I am consumed by a desire to learn, and books have been amongst the greatest teachers I have ever had.

In this day and age, almost anyone can be a writer. But so many writers have simply been flashes in the pan, 15-minute success stories. Bad writers are a dime a dozen. Good writers, however, are teachers – and I have never wanted to teach. I’ve wanted to read and read and read.

I hopelessly admire writers, and I do enjoy writing. But I never waste time I could spend sleeping to write, unless I am mired in personal difficulties and would be losing sleep anyway. But I have stayed awake until the asscrack of dawn was visible, swearing to finish just one more chapter – and finding myself at the end of the book. I’ve cried reading books, even books I’ve read over and over again. I’ve been infuriated by books, I’ve put down books to never pick them up again. I’ve been bored by books, I’ve been puzzled by books, I’ve been enraptured and entranced by books. There is nothing more delightful to me than reading. Not even writing.

And so I bid adieu to my dream of being a writer. It is a beautiful dream, and I no doubt will still frequent it in my imaginings. But writing is now no longer an aspiration. It is an inspiration. It will serve as a tool to express myself, to learn, to reflect, to feel, to share. It will be personal. I will always write. I will not be a writer.


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