June was hectic. I took part in the Writing 101 Blogging.U challenge, an online creative writing course provided by WordPress. It’s been a hell of a month, but now that it’s finished, I’m more sorry than relieved. It has been a useful experience, and an opportunity to exchange ideas with fellow bloggers. Also, it helped me reconnect with the act of writing for the sake of it. I’ve learned these 5 things:
1) I can actually write every day, something I would never have thought myself capable of. I can’t keep this rhythm for long, though: working full-time and spending all spare time writing means I’ll soon fall short of things to write, because writing springs from lived life. If I didn’t go out and do different things, I’d have the same thoughts revolving in my head again and again. And of course, I have to take a shower, sleep and buy groceries from time to time.
2) Brevity is key. Looking at the stats, I get more views and likes on shorter posts, which is good because I get maximum result at a minimum effort (which is not entirely true, because a short piece doesn’t necessary mean less time spent in editing). I’ve always known it’s better to go straight to the point and cut the superfluous: it was school that hijacked me into verbosity. That’s why this and this are my favourite posts so far.
3) I haven’t figured out what my voice sounds like yet, but I think it has something to do with sarcasm and rant. After all, that’s the one thing I’m good at: complaining.
4) It is true that writing is therapeutic. There’s nothing more cathartic than destroying your adversaries by turning them into pathetic, ridiculous semi-fictional characters. And I didn’t even have to make up anything: the villains in my life were just naturally horrible. I guess this has spared me a lot of work.
5) I want to be a writer. The funny thing is, I think I’ve always been aware of it. I knew it in kindergarten when I folded and scribbled colored sheets to make it look like a magazine. I knew it at elementary school, when I secretly drew comics during lessons which were too boring and slow progressing for my avid brain. Even when I was about to start University, totally clueless on which field I was going to choose and the future appeared as a blank fog wall, a deep part of me knew that. I had chosen to forget it, because everyone was telling me I was so good at it, but no one ever really directed me towards cultivating it. Instead, they hinted that writing was just a waste of time, and that the gift of gab was the only thing worth being perfected. It is not: in the age of communication, writing well is a priceless skill.