Monday, July 25, 2005

Bird by Bird

I zipped through Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott in 2 days. The book is comprised of essays dealing with "writing and life". I found the book to be both encouraging and inspiring at a time when I had forgotten some of the reasons that I chose to start writing in the first place.

Ms. Lamott reminded me that the point of writing is not publication, but rather putting the stories and ideas that live inside me, down on paper, to give them expression. Writing about what is true is a way to explore and make sense of my life and one day it may be an opportunity for a reader to connect and identify with something that I wrote.

"Becoming a writer is about becoming conscious. When you're conscious and writing from a place of insight and simplicity and real caring about the truth, you have the ability to throw the lights on for your reader. He or she will recognize his or her life and truth in what you say, in the pictures you have painted, and this decreases the terrible sense of isolation that we have all had too much of."

My grandma died a month ago and left the stories of her life swimming around in my head. She led, in my opinion, an amazing yet simple life. So, the task is before me to write these things down, not to create something literary, but to create a picture of my grandma's life, one that will last and once again bring her to life in my heart. Ms. Lamott reminded me that:
"To have written your own version is an honorable thing."
If you love to write, I highly recommend that you read Ms. Lamott's witty and encouraging book, you will be inspired.

Happy reading and writing!