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Archetype (1 Viewer)

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Senior Member
This is just an entry scribbled into a personal journal, so if the language is harsh, it's because it was written by me, to me. Take no offense. I thought it might be useful to someone, in some way.

For context, I was thinking about the reason that we write, who we write for, and why. That's not even getting into the execution of it, but hey, one has to start somewhere. Pleasant Sunday, everyone.



A writer produces his best writing when he writes for the audience. Does that sound schemy? Does it sound Capitalist? You're looking at it the wrong way, from the wrong lens, and maybe that's you, because maybe your bottom line is measured in dollars. No. The right way to look at it is that you want to GIVE something to the audience, you want to SHOW them - - not an idea that you had - - NO, NOT AN IDEA THAT YOU HAD, something that you fostered and developed in an attempt to be smart of clever, but rather a TRUTH that you have found while you were exploring, deep in the wilds of life. You found this thing, and maybe it took you a hell of a lot to get there and maybe it was painful and grueling to find it, but despite all that, maybe BECAUSE of all that, you DID find it, and that's not NOTHING.

And the thing that you found, in your eyes, is so important, that it HAS to be shared. People need to see it, with such an urgency and immediacy that it might be tempting to snatch it up, pull it root and stem from the ground and run back to your tribe, screaming, with the prize held aloft above your head.

How tragic would that be? How horrific, to take this fine, fine thing that nature grew all by itself, to pull it from the earth and to run it through your formulas and attach a list of check boxes to it, staple its roots down into a pattern and hack its branches short to fit inside the filigreed, painted cage with the double stitched spine and embossed dust jacket.

Don't turn the thing into a circus attraction. Don't paint it up like a harlot. Let it be what it is, and recognize that one of the many reasons you found it so beautiful is because of WHERE you found it. Try to respect that. Try to work within that respect. Call out to the audience, your tribesmen, who you love and respect and want the best for, that you've found something.

Invite them to come with you, to see it where you found it, and perhaps you tidy up the path to make the entire experience an EXPERIENCE along the way to that prize you've found, that prize so important and beautiful that to be seen ONLY BY YOU would be the worst of all tragedies.
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"I have seen the sun break through
to illuminate a small field
for a while, and gone my way
and forgotten it. But that was the
pearl of great price, the one field that had
treasure in it. I realise now
that I must give all that I have
to possess it. Life is not hurrying

on to a receding future, nor hankering after
an imagined past. It is the turning
aside like Moses to the miracle
of the lit bush, to a brightness
that seemed as transitory as your youth
once, but is the eternity that awaits you."

- R. S. Thomas

My only hope is that the brightness and light of Jesus Christ shines through in my work. That is the Thing that has found me (it would be silly to say I have found it); the tree that I have stumbled across in the woods is the Cross. If I dim or trim that to make it more palatable to an audience, I have failed both as a poet and a Christian.

So, yes, yes, and yes. GIVE to your audience. Writing is an act of LOVE. Let's not be so arrogant as to not listen to what they want (or think our 'ideas' are our own, as you articulated well), but not so compromised we do injustice to truth.

Thank you for posting this.


Senior Member
I write to be read; I write for the reader. Otherwise, I might as well be scribbling in my journal while high on crack.


WF Veterans
I like the fact that you say in your own words that we should state the truth. Or that it is the underlying reason we all write. I agree fully with this if I understood it as implied. Writing for an audience is tricky, since the audience can be yourself and others. The truth can be the theme of the story. It's the message that you want your audience to remember. In fiction, it is somewhat important. Maybe in movies it is all the focus of the final product. Dialogue conveys theme. Might as well say a novel can have a theme too. Characters are important. But sometimes this lesson the character learns is the theme. I see this as the truth you refer to. It is very much worth discussing.
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