Find a Purpose. Get Connected.
I started writing for one reason: to make a difference. I refused to write or do anything even remotely related to pen and paper when I was younger. I saw it as a waste of time and hated it. My mom would have to practically drag me out from under the kitchen table anytime she wanted me to write. ( I was like seven by the way, but still…point made).
It wasn’t until I realized that writing was more than just a torture device that teachers and parents use to drive children of all ages crazy. People, for thousands of years, have used writing to carry on history, write laws, and make a difference.
One journalist was my inspiration, the man who changed my views on writing in general…He is the one who made me realize that writing is more than just an education device, but also a way to make a difference in the world; to leave a legacy, a mark. His name was Upton Sinclair, the writer of the book The Jungle.
“It was like some horrible crime committed in a dungeon, all unseen and unheeded, buried out of sight and of memory.”
― Upton Sinclair,
He went into the dark recesses of the meat-packing industry in the early 1800’s. That alone impressed me. The meat packing industry, at that time, was absolutely disgusting. People, rats, and other unmentionables, would fall into the vats of boiling water, die or float into where the workers mixed and packed the meats, and would combine with the meat that would go into sausages, hamburgers, and other kinds of mixed meat products. Sinclair went into this place and spent months, years even, trying to “out” them. He was an investigative journalist. That became my dream.
As a christian writer, I quickly realized that I couldn’t write anything without trying to speak my mind and make a difference. What is the point of writing if you don’t strive to change the world? Even novelists who write fiction/ fantasy novels, write for a reason. Whether that reason is to share a bit of their imagination with people all over the world or to just get their ideas on paper, there is a reason behind their writing.
If you are a writer/ aspiring author, you must have a purpose for writing. That’s what I was missing as a young child. I couldn’t see the purpose behind all of the essays and stories that my mom made me write for school.
Once I found my niche in the writing world (journalist/ aspiring fiction writer), I found my purpose. I found my reason for writing. That’s what every writer needs in order to be successful. Purpose.
My purpose is to make a difference; to be the next Upton Sinclair…What’s yours? Everyone’s calling is different and unique. If you understand what that calling is for you, or know what kind of writer you are/ meant to be, comment below and tell me about it.
The one good thing about being a writer is that it opens you up to a large community of like-minded people and the internet truly helps with that.
Once you find what makes you stand out as a writer, find other people with the same distinction. Find seasoned writers who write like you do because, I can promise you, those who are experienced can help you season your own writing.
A good resource/ community for writers, who are still searching or would like to share their writing with others, is wattpad.com.
Wattpad is a platform for writers who want to meet other authors. I have been using it for years and have found it to be a great way to meet editors, published writers, publishers, and beta readers. I would implore any beginner or seasoned writer to check it out.
If you end up liking it here is the link to my profile so you can get a feel for what its like!
Here are a couple more good resources for writing communities:
Both of the sites above I have tried and enjoyed. Figment has a lot of contests for everyone and literally everyone. That is one thing about the site that I have not seen anywhere else. However, wattpad has a way better community in comparison. Wattpad has clubs and chatrooms where Figment doesn’t have either.
Critique circle lacks direct community, however it gives you an outlet for your writing. You critique other people’s stories and gain credits so that you can post your own pieces to be critiqued by other readers. Everyone is encouraged and, really, almost forced, to give honest, thorough reviews of the writing posted. I know that I have greatly benefitted from this site every time I get a review back on one of my stories.
I hope that this article gave you, as a fellow scribe and Blogaholic, a new outlook on being a writer, the community it brings, and the goals and purposes behind writing.
If you have any questions or comments please leave a comment below and I’ll reply as soon as possible!
Now with that, I’ll sign out. Your fellow Blogaholic,