Exploring the Open-Ends

Something I struggle with personally, is looking at the finish-line from a distance - the finish-line being a goal, conclusion, or anywhere that I want to end up in relations to my life and career. In this case, the finish-line is me, sitting in a semi-secluded home, drinking pots of coffee, with pen and paper in hand, having built a lengthy career as a writer, with no real worries or concerns, other than my next piece of work (excluding the idea of a family merely for the purpose of this post). 

Unfortunately, getting to the finish-line is not one giant leap. Getting to any finish-line is a sequence of steps. Typically, those steps are small, and can seem meaningless when viewed singularly. I have spent way too much time in my life contemplating the meaning of the next step. In relations to career advancement (my current dilemma), contemplating usually means you're staying put, which over time means you're actually digressing... That's what brings me here today. This is the first step. The first step of many. The first step of the marathon.

In moving forward with this blog, my goal is to write about writing in every way I can possibly find, while being completely open and honest. As I previously stated, I am at the beginning of the marathon. I am young and relatively inexperienced. This blog won't be Ernest Hemingway giving directions to the promised land, from the promised land. This blog will be more of a companionship. A collaboration between me and an audience. I am trying to find my way to the faraway island that Hemingway resides on, with admittedly-little knowledge of how to get there. This is my attempt to stock the supplies, build a raft, decipher the tide, forecast the weather, and set out to sea, with only one direction in mind. It's a gigantic sea to cross, but writing is an endlessly interesting craft that I feel can be explored forever (much like the actual sea... Get it? Yeah, I hate myself too, don't worry). And so, that being said, I'll consider this my first post. It may be more of an introductory brain-dump, but I'll try to move through it with grace...


I love writing, and I love to discuss writing. The process, the depth, and everything that goes into every choice a writer makes. It's fascinating to me, and it's a perfect representation of human nature and creativity. Writing is an art. It has flavor. It's funny. It's sad. It's weird. It's interesting. It's different. It's subjective. Writing is human experience, molded into human-made languages. Writing is emotional programming put to paper. In my opinion, writing is a disguised manner for humans to be completely honest, without appearing fearful of life and fate. It's a way for us to non-directly ask all of the questions that we have about existing. It's a way to move outside of conversation and present our inner-workings to others.

Writing is a way to acknowledge the fact that many things are open-ended and unanswerable, and it gives us the ability to connect with others on that thought. It allows us to say to others, "I guess we'll never know, huh?" But it's also a terrific means of exploring those existential open-ends (love, loss, despair, joy, religion, death, etc, etc). And, in my opinion, that's why we do it. 

Whether it's a novel, a letter, a poem, a biography, or simply scratching on a notepad, we're exploring the open-ends. Most writing includes some form of anecdote, which directly allows us to explore our own open-ends and concerns. Different forms of writing simply allow for different forms of personal exploration into different open-ends.

Novels present fiction, which allows writers the ability to add spice and flair to a compilation of anecdotes, while also allowing them the opportunity to hypothetically close an open-end - usually in a favorable manner. A letter is most likely an attempt to have a specific open-end closed by a specific person. Poetry is human curiosity presented through salience and imagery. A biography is simply dumping the truth on the audience, along with anything you may have derived from that truth. Scratching on a notepad is pretty self-explanatory. It's so open that there's not even an end to speak of... And lastly, blogs allow people like me to sit down and hammer confusion into their keyboards, and present it as faux-intellectualism.

Sure, there is a large disparity between all of these forms of writing. And sure, there is also a large disparity within each given form. That, is what makes writing even more interesting: the open air available for occupancy. Everybody has a different story, thus, everybody writes a different story.

And, ironically, through all of this, I can't help but consider my own open-ended nature of discussing this idea. But, I feel that this post is a good representation of writing, and the flexibility (or confusion, perhaps?) that it presents. Maybe it's just rambling non-sense, but I personally find value in exploring these ideas. I find value in taking something certainly less-than-complicated, and diving much deeper.

Now, while I have stated multiple times that writing is about exploring (personal) open-ends, I understand that the writing itself should not be open-ended, and so I'll conclude with this...

Why we write is why we live. As I've gotten older, I've realized that the outlets available for us to be creative, simply provide different portals that lead to the same thing: connection. Our brains need connection. Again, not rocket science here, but it's interesting to explore those portals. The writing-portal allows us to control time. There's no, "Ah, damnit, I shouldn't have said that." When writing, we have the ability to move backwards in time, where we can blanket and/or decorate the bleak parts of our lives. It presents a control that we don't actually have - a control that comforts us when simply considering it's possibility. And again, that's why we write. Unfortunately, that possibility is as real as fiction. Even more unfortunately, this post has turned as bleak as the moments we write to forget...

Perhaps this blog will be something I decorate or remove in future writing, or perhaps I'll look back on it as the true first step that led me to my ultimate finish-line. I won't know that answer for a very long time, if ever, but it's enough of a reason for me to continue exploring the open-ends. So now, I begin my quest for an indestructible raft, and a sea of glass. Hemingway, here I come...


At the onset of Friday the 13th,
Brian