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Saturday, September 26, 2009

Finding a Means of Expression

Finding a means of expression is very important. Expressing ourselves through our life endeavors brings a sense of satisfaction. With many different skills, talents, and personalities, we all seek to make distinct points of our thoughts and feelings. Our ability to lend ourselves to producing a good product builds greater self-confidence and makes others aware of our various concerns.

Expression doesn't have to be verbal. It may involve action through nonverbal communication such as movements and physical skills; even gestures, body language, and facial expressions lend to expression. In fact, many people express themselves best in their work. In essence, their hands provide their basic outlet for expression. Manual laborers, crafts people, and other skilled artisans often produce works that display their unique talents. Pride in accomplishing work well done is extremely gratifying to those who complete any creation of their labor.

Discovering fitting expression is not always easy. I have found myself frustrated many times because I lacked the ability to make myself perfectly clear. At those times, I knew what I wanted to express but lacked the means to communicate my thoughts and feelings.

A worker with symbols and not physical objects, I liken my words to bricks used by a bricklayer. Good foundations, straight lines, and sufficient mortar for me involve specific detail, development, and transition.Certain language tools aid me in the process of stringing letters together. But, without structural blueprints, rambling edifices often emerge. And so continues, the ache of finding direct, suitable means of expression

Building a written work with style and significant, clear meaning is no small task for a writer. It demands great effort by the author and very particular attention to the audience. Prewriting, revision, and final drafting with critical editing begs for shortcuts because, to be quite honest, a certain pain exists in the entire process. The growing pains of written expression become more tolerable as the work matures because the writer sees his vision with greater clarity of form.

I often recollect the words of a carpenter friend who constantly reminds me during a home improvement that "No one said it was going to be easy." Shortcuts in producing good written expression really do not exist. So, I try to ease the pain by writing within my means about subjects of personal interest. My fluency is often greater as I write about things close to my heart.Sometimes, almost magically, words turn into sentences that stack into coherent paragraphs. When conscious and unconscious thought blend, the stream of my writing flows best.

As a writer, I produce a voice that often asks the reader not only to participate by mechanically reading the strings of words I put together but also to act upon the information in some manner. Sometimes, this involves reflection upon the subject and theme of the piece, and sometimes this involves reaction after digesting the information. Written comments can provide critical feedback for my expression. And, of course, answering a call to action indicates support of certain notions.

I also believe writers learn to live with the loneliness of their expression. So often their work, produced in solitude, remains unread or, at best, is shared with a very limited audience. After awhile, writers realize their daily efforts are mental push-ups meant to satisfy their own longing for fitness of thought.

In doing their exercises, writers' productions create stacks of paper which contain the imprints of their lonely lives.Their words become fitting substitutes for friendly congregations of human beings. Their conversations of interest, although monologues, trust in the ability of their symbols to speak to them with greatest clarity and to be duly recorded and preserved.The worth of the writers' expression is found in the very act of their commitment to continuing the struggle to communicate with precision and truth.

Here are some writing quotes to use as food for thought:

"Writing, at its best, is a lonely life. Organizations for writers palliate the writer's loneliness, but I doubt if they improve his writing. He grows in public stature as he sheds his loneliness and often his work deteriorates. For he does his work alone and if he is a good enough writer he must face eternity, or the lack of it, each day."  Ernest Hemingway

"Writing is a form of therapy; sometimes I wonder how all those, who do not write, compose, or paint can manage to escape the madness, the melancholia, the panic fear, which is inherent in a human condition."  Graham Greene

"To hold a pen is to be at war."  Voltaire 

"All good writing is swimming under water and holding your breath."  F. Scott Fitzgerald 

"Fiction is a lie, and good fiction is the truth inside the lie."  Stephen King

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