El artificio de la escritura / The artifice of writing

jueves, 5 de julio de 2007

We are all writers

I realized with amazement that the passion to write can strike anyone capable of holding a pen,” comments the protagonist and narrator of Isaac Bashevis Singer’s Shosha, the novel of a writer (Ch. 6). One could paraphrase his words of surprise by saying that the computer, a mightier instrument than the pen, makes a writer of everyone capable of two-fingered typing, I included, of course.

That a published, professional writer who has struggled to be recognized by editors as a worthy risk expresses his amazement to the popularity of writing should not surprise anyone, except, that goes without saying, by the myriads of authors who make their works available to the larger public through the instantaneous publishing venues of the internet. Self-publishing aside, the age-old and proven useful method of making one’s words available to the reading public, the Internet has to be the best thing that could have happen to the infinite number of those stricken by the “passion to write”; a passion, as we all know, made up mostly of the blinding desire of being published. I doubt anyone would keep a blog for the sole purpose of writing.

Having started a blog only after the encouraging insistence of an enthusiastic expert user of the many opportunities offered by the internet, I have felt from the beginning certain misgiving about the nature of the instrument and about the reasons and objectives for running such a tempting form of written expression.

For someone suffering from chronic writing passion, bordering on logorrhea, having a blog in which to write for everyone is a dream made true, an impossible wish granted by the genie. And dreams that become true and wishes that are granted by a magical being are not supposed to happen. Thus, I feel that while in my blog I might be dealing with forces I cannot fathom, desires that loom mysteriously in the depths of the mind, obsessions that should be reined instead of running wild and freely.

When has anyone had such total availability of a means to express publicly their ideas, their most intimate points of view, their feelings and their comments as now through the ever present and widely available internet? Compared with the now practically obsolete methofd of the private printing and private distribution of one’s own manuscripts the blog is a marvel: it offers a trouble free and immediate publishing with a potentially world-wide distribution.

What an opportunity for the writer in all of us.

Faced with this virtually universal and free podium the pondering blogger pauses to consider what to write and for what purpose. Would the blog be only a substitute for a personal, self-centered diary, a form of emotional exhibitionism, a call for attention? A means to satisfy the need for publishing? Or should it be a less egotistical tribune for discussing at a personal level issues of interest to others? I suppose there is not a simple answer, not one and only objective for posting one’s work in the blog for anyone to find and ponder. I only wish I will make the best of this instrument I have been given and that others who read my postings will also profit from them and, if things turn for the best, will engage in a dialogue.

2 comentarios:

Anónimo dijo...

The blog allows instant gratification of written expression, perhaps the ultimate manifestation of freedom of the press and freedom of expression. Its fluidity and flexibility allow for immediate updates, and even a bit of the traditional self-horn-tooting, as it were. I really and truly appreciate such a wide and free platform on which to display my words, without the fear of reprisals and negative repercussions. It may be wise for all to reflect upon the tremendous privilege entrusted us with this outstanding mode of exercising one of our most fundamental constitutional rights and realize that we alone are the stewards of this unique oportunity: Let's do all we can to preserve it. I congratulate Santiago Daydí-Tolson for his effort and I feel privileged beyond measure to participate in his blog. Thank you, my friend!

Anónimo dijo...