The Modern Writer

John Steinbeck once said, “All great and precious things are lonely.” Actually he wrote that. In East of Eden (phenomenal book, by the way.)

Writing is a lonely job. The act of putting words on paper with the clear goal of creating some form of art, whether is a novel, a short story, a poem, or a play requires solitude. It’s an inexorable truth about the condition of the writer; he has to be able to put aside the real world, the world outside his window, so he can focus more on the world that he’s creating.

And it’s a troublesome process; it involves a lot of hard work. It is generally believed that great writers can effortlessly write brilliant stories. But it’s not like that. It takes time, it takes a lot of patience, and, of course, it takes a lot of hard work. No one can write a fantastic first draft.

But today’s writers are a different breed. Self-publishing has managed to turn writers from the introvert characters of the past into machines that are able to write, advertise, blog, write reviews and guest posts. If it’s good or not, I can’t be the judge of that. But I do know that it’s a good way to connect with readers; via social networks or an author blog, or through reading communities like Goodreads. And it adds a whole new dimension to the writing business.

In the end, I am sure that artists, in general, and writers, in particular, create their art for a million different reasons. Some do it to entertain, some as a way of escaping a tragic life, some do it because they desire to attain a certain immortality. Undoubtedly, some do it for fame, glory, or money. But I think that all artists have this in common; they’re all driven by the desire to share their art with the world. That’s what we all want; for someone to listen to us sing, for someone, at least one person, to read our stories.

What is it there for artists other than the chance to share our most precious and beloved talent with the world?

Indeed, there are certain artists, very few, who didn’t want to share their art. Kafka, for once, wanted all his manuscripts be burned. But those are few exceptions. Most artists want to be read, listened to, or admired. And this is what all writers should keep in mind; that someone is reading their work, someone is willing to give up a little bit of the most precious commodity on Earth, time, and read the words they have put on paper.

And this takes me to my next point: when someone loves your story. This is a feeling that can’t be described, and can’t be felt by anyone else but the writer. In its uniqueness lies what, I reckon, all writers should consider as being the ultimate goal; to please their readers. To make them feel, to make them cry or laugh, to make them happy or sad. Because this is a power few people have. Just a couple of friends or maybe a million strangers, but in the end all we need is for someone to genuinely enjoy reading our stories. Money, fame, all that, comes as a bonus, if we’re lucky enough.

The Modern Writer has the capability and the tools to connect with his readers in a way that wasn’t possible before. The world is getting smaller, the internet is faster, and more and more people are reading on their computers, e-readers, or cell phones. This is a century of technology, a century in which everyone’s connected with everyone else, and The Modern Writer should make the best of it.

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30 comments on “The Modern Writer

  1. grand-player says:

    East of Eden…………one of my favorites

  2. shoe1000 says:

    Thank you for giving me some badly needed perspective

  3. quirkybooks says:

    Love this post. I have shared it on my http://www.facebook.com/quirkybooksnet page.

  4. Alphawings says:

    Social media is all about storytelling, which makes it a great place for writers to hone their craft.

  5. theshinracompanyblog says:

    Yes, you write in english, me I write in Italian, we may be far away, but we think the same and the process that is transforming the art we like, the art we trust in, is the same for both. Me I wrote some similar stuff on my blogs and it is really amazing knowing not to be alone neither here, nor in the whole world.

    We are a new generation of writers, whatever we write. Novels, short stories, poems, blogs. We know it and we can do our best. Not a single artist, but as a whole-world-wide writer generation..

  6. Your posts touch that writerly part of me that few understand. Well done, my friend!

  7. “In its uniqueness lies what, I reckon, all writers should consider as being the ultimate goal; to please their readers.” – You hit the nail on the head there. I love providing my readers with value, and if they can get something out of what I’ve written, then I know my job is done. Thanks for writing this. It’s inspirational and serves as a reminder of why we do what we do.

  8. Another very enjoyable and encouraging read! Thank you.

  9. serenitysearcherii says:

    I like your writing and you make a valid point. I just discovered WordPress. It is still new. So far I have only posted poems. I can honestly say that it gas encouraged me to write more and to write better. Before the advent of social media, my poems would remain in my desk drawer. I agree with your statement, “The Modern Writer has the capability and the tools to connect with his readers in a way that wasn’t possible before. The world is getting smaller, the internet is faster, and more and more people are reading on their computers, e-readers, or cell phones…” Thank you for this post.

  10. nilshekhar10 says:

    I absolutely agree. It is as important for a writer now to promote his work as it is to create it. It is indeed a lonely and laboured process to write something but as you said, if I can bring a smile or a tear to even a single person through my words then it is totally worth it.

  11. Beautiful post. Love it ^^

  12. A lovely piece. Rapidly changing outside world is changing the behavior and action of a writer. Aptly coined the modern writer!!!

  13. I gladly took the time to read this – very insightful to a new blogger like myself. Thanks for sharing your words

  14. AdiC says:

    “And this is what all writers should keep in mind; that someone is reading their work, someone is willing to give up a little bit of the most precious commodity on Earth, time, and read the words they have put on paper.” This is one line which totally agree with.The modern day writer has the ability to make a differnce with his or her writhing. Beautifully expressed! :)

  15. ydandgavhal says:

    “…And this is what all writers should keep in mind; that someone is reading their work, someone is willing to give up a little bit of the most precious commodity on Earth, time, and read the words they have put on paper.”
    Yes, quality writing is possible only when we, as writers, do remember the importance of the readers’ time. Well said!

  16. kelvinoralph says:

    Okay. I definitely need to stop at your blog more often. Really inspiring. Yes. The main goal of a writer is to get his/her work read. And technology has made things a lot easier to reach across the world. I am currently in a placement in Africa, but I can still connect with my readers across the globe.

  17. Very nice post, Cristian. It is such a good feeling when a reader tells you that something you have written has touched their hearts, stretched their imagination or made them ponder over something. You did that for me with this post. Thank you.

  18. Namesake says:

    This is a much needed motivation and this blog is the perfect way to get it.

  19. dansandman says:

    Very well written and intelligently expressed. When I think about my reasons for writing or composing music, I often read George Orwell’s essay ‘Why I Write’. In it he states several reasons including historical significance and sheer ego. It’s worth reading and is reasonably concise.

  20. I really enjoyed this; it said it all . I don’ know what is more inspiring the act of writing or the act of sharing, they are two different joys. Your article has given people much to reflect upon.. One factor is where the modern writer has to weight time to write against time to promote, the latter being a bind but so necessary.

  21. Becki says:

    John Steinbeck was truely one of the wisest men and best writers of the 20th century. Love him and his work!

  22. Angshuman says:

    A Kafka fan here.. Kafka, was born in such a confusing period of history that he did not deem his penned thoughts suitable to be read by others, hence he wanted his creations to be destroyed rather than printed. Maybe he did not consider his work to be works of art. We bloggers are lucky.. :)

  23. Bre Faucheux says:

    So incredibly true! Writing is lonely. But I have always dealt with being alone fairly well. I like the online communities help me to get involved with other writers better. I also agree that there is no other feeling in the world than someone else loving your work.

  24. rzucidbm says:

    As someone who has recently decided to fully dedicate myself to my craft, this was very motivating and refreshing to read. Thank you!

  25. Really enjoyed this post! I was just thinking along these lines last night while I was reading on a Nook tablet a book that needed a good amount of editing. Writers today must take pride in their work, and they must learn how to use the words they are given, as well as plan, plot, blog, communicate, etc. This is a very good post and brings up some questions a lot of modern writers, myself included, need to sit down and think about – when we aren’t sitting down thinking about the problems we have just written ourselves into! :)

  26. ejgresearch says:

    Ah..Cristian….your prose is poetic. You find the essence of the soul of a writer and put it out here for us to see. Bravo!

  27. Great article, Cristian. You placed the reader in the shoes of a writer for a brief moment. Great job.

  28. Awesome perspective, Christian, and so true!
    We may all have different reasons for creating our pieces, but the greatest joy comes from the fact that it is appreciated by someone else.
    I sincerely wonder why someone would want his art works burnt, but I can understand that some pieces may have just been created for personal consumption.
    Thanks for sharing, you are a unique artist!

  29. We all are slaves of technology. I am happy to find blogs like yours and writers like you with this. How owuld your word and work reach others. Modern writer is bit lucky but also faces lot of competition

  30. I’m not too sure if writing is a lonely job as I never feel alone when i’m writing. I feel people, whole lot of things around me when i’m writing. But yes! words can’t express the thrill and joy one feels when readers love your story. It is immense. I love it when my story can spread happiness to all my readers. Thank you for all your posts.

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