What Counts as Writing?

Asking me to answer “What counts as writing?” is like asking me to answer “What counts as art?”. My first temptation is to answer “anything”, but I know I don’t really believe that.

. . .

Calligraphy… I was shocked to see calligraphy mentioned as a form of writing. Though calligraphy is very clearly written, it is appearance rather than content or purpose that identifies calligraphy.

Murals… Like calligraphy, murals are also identified by appearance. However, an effective mural has meaning. It tells a story.

Calligraphy… I don’t think calligraphy can tell a story. Or maybe it can. Maybe different styles of calligraphy can portray different emotions. Maybe a jagged font could portray anger. Maybe a soft, rounded font could portray happiness. And maybe an exaggerated sized font could portray excitement.

Murals… Murals are art, though. Art that is very clearly not written. Murals are painted or drawn or printed. Does writing have to be written? I think it does.

. . .

I think writing has to be written, but not always by hand. Writing can be typed and still be writing. But written words that have no purpose and tell no story aren’t writing. They are written and nothing else.

3 thoughts to “What Counts as Writing?”

  1. I liked the way you opened your post because I was thinking the exact same thing. I also liked the format of it, as though you were going back and forth in your mind and having a debate with yourself. It seems like we approached the question of “what counts as writing” in a similar way and came to basically the same conclusion.

  2. I have to agree that these two types of writing seem to be very different than what I would expect. A mural is clearly a form of art, and as far as I know, calligraphy was a form of handwriting that could not write a full story. However, I guess the interpretation of writing is anything that has some kind of meaning. Also the way you wrote this was really creative. It was nice to see a blog post that was in the form of something other than a solid paragraph. You were able to give a good amount of perspective in a way that made it very interesting to read.

  3. I agree with the previous comments about your writing. I really enjoyed your style; it was refreshing and different. I do have to say that I disagree with your point that writing has to be written. It could be because I was the person who chose calligraphy as something that represents writing to me. When I think of “writing” i think of something that tells a story. To me, different styles or fonts influence this storytelling process. But I feel that this is very individualistic and I can completely see your perspective. You had some great points.

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