I forget what it is exactly I like about writing every time I go to start a new assignment (which, in social science concentrations, happens frequently). Instead of focusing on the task at hand or better yet, my opinion on the subject, I focus on the page limit and the due date. It usually isn’t until halfway through the assignment, when words and ideas are flowing naturally, that I remember writing is and always has been, one of the best ways for me to express myself.
Both Orwell and Dillion know their reasons to write. It may have taken each a few failed works (but every book is a failure according to Orwell), poverty, and too much work for too little gained, but in the end, they became successful because they believed in why they were doing what they were doing. This leads me to wonder, Do I know why I write? At twenty years old, it seems that I have not experienced my own writing enough to even begin to understand this. However, I think I know. I think I have known since I wrote my first speech in the fourth grade; a speech that I won and for which I earned recognition.
I write to organize my ideas in ways that I would never be able to express verbally. I write to organize my ideas, period. Writing, for me, is a method of self-discovery. I can’t say that I would have a strong opinion on how Italian Politics shaped Italian Cinema in the 1940s or the anthropological views of gender and sexuality if it were not for the assignments that forced these ideas upon me. However, once complete, when I can stand firmly in my beliefs and I am willing to expose them others, this is when I remember that I, too, am a writer. I have ideas that are important and that deserve to be heard.
I suppose this is where the egotism plays in. But, in reality, doesn’t everyone want and even deserve recognition at some point? There is a negative connotation to the word “egotism,” and yet, I believe that it is a good thing. Recognition, no matter how it is achieved, is important. There are numerous outlets for positive recognition, and without them our world would not expand and develop in the way it does.
Both Orwell and Dillion bring up points that left me pondering why I write. Although they have shaped my opinion with words that I am able to utilize and ideas that make me remember there is a reason, I think that I have known all along why I write. Perhaps this “why” will change and perhaps it won’t. Maybe there will be times when I can’t remember one positive thing about my writing experiences. However, for now, I know. And honestly, isn’t that all that matters?