Quote of the Day 20080201

“The positive thing about writing is that you connect with yourself in the deepest way, and that’s heaven. You get a chance to know who you are, to know what you think. You begin to have a relationship with your mind.” — Natalie Goldberg, Author and Creative Writing Teacher

I used yesterday’s quote as the inspiration to write about reading. Today’s quote is about writing! Is this a coincidence? I think not.

I think writing is just as important as reading and speaking. The three are synergistic. The more you read the better you write. The more you write and read, the better your spoken language becomes, at least from a grammatical and word selection stand point. Reading widely grows your vocabulary, which you can in turn use in your writing. It also exposes you to how the best writers use language. Even without consciously trying to copy any particular writer, your writing is subtly influenced.

With so many sites offering free blogs, anyone who has access to a computer and the internet can begin writing in a medium where countless other people can read and comment on your writing. It can be an invaluable tool for self expression and exploration. You can share ideas and explore issues that matter to you.

Writing, as the quote says, connects you with the deepest parts of yourself and with blogs can also connect you with the world like never before. Before the internet and blogs, there was very little chance that the average person’s writing could be read by dozens, if not hundreds or thousands of people. Now you have the chance. I’ll close with a second quote that dovetails nicely with this idea of writing as self examination and exploration:

“The unexamined life is not worth living.”Socrates 470 – 399 BCE, Philosopher

Are you willing to examine your life via writing? If you don’t want to do it in public, create an anonymous blog. Or if that’s still to public, buy a journal and write a little bit everyday. It doesn’t have to be an expensive leather bound one, but those are nice, it can just be a spiral bound notebook. Just find something and write! Your life is worth living and thus it is worth you examining it!

Oh, btw, let me take this moment to mention one of my favorite books on writing The Elements of Style a little book that was written before I was born. My grandfather, may he rest in peace, gave me my first copy. If you haven’t read it, add it to your reading list. It will forever change the way you write, read and even impact your critical thinking.

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