You, Right Now

When we think about whether the audience will like our work, we tend to consider everyone. That's not right. That's an impossible group to satisfy. Everyone... Really? No. Stop that.

Sometimes I find myself filtering certain parts of myself when writing. The information may stay the same, but feelings change, and I don't think they should. When we filter human feelings when writing, we actually change the meaning of words. Every thought you have is accompanied by a feeling in that moment. It does not matter what the actual feeling is, but it matters in making the writing more sincere. Your writing should be you, right now. That's who is doing the writing. You... Right now. There's no need to match feelings to a different point in time. Your place in the past and past feelings are all implied in you, right now.

For example, write with the confidence that you feel in the moment. Don't dial anything back for your reader. If you are confident when writing something, then be confident. There is no such writer that is meek and powerful. Don't be submissive. Submit the reader. That's the point. That's what a writer is. Take control. Readers do not go into something knowing that they will put the writer in a stranglehold. They can't. They are not there when the piece gets written.

Plus, reading is a selfish act. An audience does not read something for the enjoyment of the writer. They read for themselves, and rightly so. You do your job. The audience will always do theirs. An audience is always the same. You are always changing.

It's always important to consider the point in time specific to a word's definition. An audience is something that happens after you have already written. You cannot let a potential audience change the work you have not given them yet. Do not conform to something that has no real existence. Imagine writing a current events piece about events that haven't happened yet... That's the equivalent. So let the events happen. Let something happen. Because something will happen, and whatever happens will not include the audience.

Also, consider this: there is only one person that cannot be a part of your audience: you. You will never be able to see your work the same way someone else does. You are a single person, and the audience is a bunch of not-you's. They are all singular. They are all different from one another. And you, the writer, are more different than they are from each other.

So, why would you rely on yourself to decide how the audience will react? You shouldn't. You can't. Write based on you being the audience, because while you are writing, you are the audience.

Writing is much different than speaking in this sense, too. I can be meek verbally, but I try not to be as a writer. Verbally, silence is a monumental tool. In writing, there is no such thing as silence. Space filled is the only thing that exists. So don't be meek. Fill the space with what's filling your head, and that's it. A meek writer does not write with his or her own thoughts, and therefore, does not write with his or her own words. What the hell is the point of that?

Brian H.