“You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you.”
– Ray Bradbury
“What do you think of the world? You, the prism, measure the light of the world; it burns through your mind to throw a different spectroscopic reading onto white paper than anyone else anywhere can throw. Let the world burn through you. Throw the prism light, white hot, on paper.”– Ray Bradbury
“What are the best things and the worst things in your life, and when are you going to get around to whispering or shouting them?”
– Ray Bradbury
There are several reasons for the three Bradbury quotes above.
One is because they resonate with me as a writer, in a time of doubt and uncertainty, in an age of tumultuous societal change it seems paramount to hang onto your spirit and spark as a writer, now more than ever.
Second, because I have just finished reading the astoundingly inspiring book by Ray Bradbury ‘Zen in the Art of writing.’
And lastly, because they form the core and theme of this blog post because they motivated me to write this, being beautiful meditations on truth, originality and the necessity to make your writing fearless and pure in a world of convincing illusions.
Let’s get right to it, shall we?
Write yourself into existence.
There is one thing I know, and that is that we should always write without fear, and edit without mercy. There are enough of the same people out there, with the same thoughts, that walk around, forgetting (or pretending to forget) that what they own means not a thing, and what they think is nothing new or noteworthy.
Millions of people milling around outside during the days, pretending it is them that is special only, only them that looks out and understands the world.
Hubris. And I don’t mean that in a way in which I am better and unique, and you better listen to my words lest you become one of them! I mean in the sense that it is worth pondering worth noting and being aware of the motivations of humanity. For when writing, we too become caught up in the web of despair, trying and struggling feebly to worm our way out and through the web of lies that society builds around us wrapping us tighter and tighter with each passing year with its finite silky spidery threads.
So write so real that the world might tremble in fear of what you might become. Speak loud. Transcribe your truest self. Your most exacting thoughts, your true feelings and your innermost thoughts. Don’t pander to a crowd, don’t heed the callings, running and milling to a commercial appeal and viability. The trends mean nothing in the transitory nature of literature, art and life.
It is easy to doubt our thoughts and second guess our impulses, quickly thinking that they are not socially acceptable, our ideas and dreams are not fit for the world at large.
But damn it all to hell! Life is not granted to us to be slaves, to string ourselves up like puppets, allowing others to dictate us our thoughts and creative efforts. We are born to a higher destiny than to be a mere chattel of our bodies.
There comes a time in all our lives when we need to choose. Will we go with the flock and tread in shit or will we go our way, writing real, thinking true to ourselves, and having the confidence and courage to step up and say; this is who I am!
We are puppets on strings dancing to the tunes of our masters, and yet nobody seems to say a thing. We are too blinded, willingly engaged in distraction, appeased and entertained, happy in our incarceration. I say fuck the people who say they have the answers. The people who say all things of the past, our heritage and our meaning as monsters and impostors on the new burgeoning alien values that try to worm their way into our lives.
The acceptance of individualism is seen as a benchmark of cultural progress. This is something to celebrate, to appreciate and enjoy.
Yet the world is rapidly changing. I see the fate of continuous, separated confusion, of values that profess a better future, but only appear to be more problems that loom on the horizon, waiting patiently for us to catch up with our slow minds, as the problem looms, laughing at us in our delusion.
Always question the popular narratives, cultivate equanimity and tune out and turn down the noise.
Take pen to paper, or hit that keyboard with fingers that make their own music, their own dance. Make it loud, be proud of your liberation and freedom of expression. Your individuality is a hard-won battle, don’t give up on it now, don’t give up on it ever.
So stay hungry friends and in the words of Bradbury who I wholly attribute and thank for the inspiration of this post, ‘stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you.’