Now I sit me down to write
I ask God for words not trite
I wish I can, I wish I might
Pen a masterpiece tonight.
Many times as we sit down to write, visions of grandeur fill our minds. After all, how hard can it be? I am sure Charles Dickens or Samuel Clemens simply put on paper whatever came to mind didn’t they? It is simply a matter of letting the words flow from our exceptionally creative minds through our fingers to the page. Right?
If it were only that simple. Plot line? What’s a plot line? What do you mean I should rewrite that? I like it that way! For every potential Oscar winning screenwriter out there, for every potential poet laureate, for every possible Nobel laureate for literature, I say enjoy your craft. Do not write for the accolades of man. If you do, your work will find itself becoming a creature that you do not enjoy. Enjoy your craft.
To sit and write for the enjoyment of others, for the edification of others, for the lifting of man’s spirit is more fulfilling than any prize to be won. Enjoy your craft. Find the joy in the development of your story. Watch your characters grow, as if they were your own children. Your ideas coalesce into a nearly physical being in your mind as you press on in your work. Enjoy your craft.
Let rewrites become a joy as you mold your piece like a potter would shape a vase. Let your critics become your friends, for the truly honest ones are invaluable to the writer. Enjoy your craft. As with the work on the potter’s wheel, know that many works do not end as originally intended. In well trained, experienced hands many will become great works admired by man. Many more, still will be simply useful, bringing a smile or a reflective moment into someone’s life. Still others will be broken and discarded. But even here the broken pot thrown to the ground becomes the foundation on the soil for new works to begin. Let nothing go to waste. Enjoy your craft.
For the joy in writing comes not in the far flung dreams of grandeur obtained by so few in our world, but rather in the moment of discovery. The birth of an idea, the epiphany of a story line that returns to its path long ago lost in the ramblings of your wandering mind, the joy of one person living a better life because what you put on that page spoke to them when they needed it most. Enjoy your craft and your craft will bring joy.