I have a... different relationship with words than most people who write. So many have upheld their English teacher (parent, professor, etc) for praising their work and supporting them on their path with words. My path was always much more private. I don't remember anyone who held authority, legitimacy, and therefor weight spurring me forward into this world of words while I was a young girl.
But would you like to know what I do remember? I remember journaling full notebooks of thoughts, ideas, and words. I remember conversing with God through pen and paper. I remember the love of each paper which was assigned to me through school. I remember the excitement of finishing each piece easily, and looking forward to the red letter on the page when it returned.
I remember typing one night long into the dark under the light of a desk lamp as my roommate slept on the other side of the room. I remember my thoughts, research, and heart as the words poured out of me and I embraced them on the page. I remember it being a sociology paper.
Not everyone can see the passion which dwells within you if no one has told you it is okay to show the passion. And I have been a bit of a rule follower for much of my life. So why would I ever think someone should support me in the words, or tell me to "never stop writing", when it was something I kept hidden?
Last week a girl in Story Sessions, whom I am getting to know, renewed her passion for writing fiction. I was and still am so excited for her. I don't know her past with words or how many people did or didn't tell her to never stop writing, but what I have seen is an amazing group of women who have come around her and supported her and told her to write and keep writing. I told her it was so important for her to write, and I meant that so much.
You see, she's not just writing for herself. She's writing for me as well, though she doesn't know it. Somewhere between hearing her speak of her dream, and thinking about names I realized something about my writing. I had pigeon-holed it.
My writing MUST be private OR helpful WHICH MEANS nonfiction. I have a heart for fiction, but outside of putting myself in other people's shoes and writing that way, I have not written fiction. Oh, I wanted to, but that didn't fit my box.
And it struck me, as she set out on this course for herself, that maybe I could dip my toes in the world of fiction words as well. So, I'm considering. And I'm thinking. And maybe soon, I'll be writing those words out in public.
And if you never received support for something you have passion for, I encourage you to find a group to whom you can speak that dream out loud. I haven't quite done that yet, but I sort of am right now. You can do it, friend!
This post was written in response to a Story Sessions prompt. Consider joining us? They are a wonderful supporting group, and not just writers as well!