Giuliana persuades us to write and liberate opinions, fears, and language.
“I don’t know how to write anything” — You're wrong.
To write for this magazine is one of the most exciting endeavors I’ve pursued. Trying to write my first article for this magazine is one of the most daunting. But, being a writer is fun. You learn how to tell a story, enlighten minds, and command a language. You also learn what it feels like when a web page gets refreshed because it isn’t loading the way you want it to. By that, I mean that no matter how well versed you are in whatever subject you’re trying to write, it will escape you and it will take a few tries before your thoughts fall in line.
Writing is fun, but it is also a process. It’s not as easy as picking a topic. I’m also establishing first impressions. Not only of my writing ability, but also of who I am as a person, my beliefs, convictions, and passions. A piece of your soul becomes part of everything you create. How do I put my soul into this?
Well, the first thing to consider is whether or not it’s worth putting your soul into. If I may offer an example, if you’re writing for a student magazine, certainly you care about the message you’re sending. This isn’t an introductory assignment for your history class to prove you’ve done the required reading. I don’t blame you if you’re not particularly invested in a ten-page paper about why Napoleon decided to challenge a Russian winter. I completely understand why writing about your favorite pop culture icon and their influence on contemporary society is dramatically more appealing. Having that sense of choice is liberating. The choice to write at all is an opportunity to participate in commentary, discourse, with hundreds of other minds like yours. This is your blank page to fill, a page to exist among pages of other writers who have something to say.
Everyone has something to say.
What do I have to say? If you’ve read this far and are still left wondering what I’m trying to say amidst this, here’s my point. I want to hear what you have to say. Yes, you. Our audience, our readers. In writing this, I hope to inspire readers to write more and without fear. Maybe for their classes, maybe for this magazine, but most importantly for themselves.
It is a common misconception that everything you do must be done in pursuit of greatness. That’s not to say you shouldn’t have dreams, but writing shouldn’t be a burden. You shouldn’t write under the pressure of being the best, the most revolutionary, the next award-winning author. You should write under the assumption that what you are writing is worth being written. This assumption is not a debatable one. Your voice deserves to be heard, without the threat of being silenced. For a voice to be heard, all you need is one person to listen, to witness you. Sometimes, it is enough if you are your own witness. You owe yourself that right.
Don’t be afraid of an empty notebook, a pen that’s low on ink, a word you’re not sure how to spell, a thought you can’t quite understand. Writing can be time-consuming, but embrace that part of the process. Don’t be afraid to put in the work. If the thoughts become tangled in a knot, comb through them, take scissors and cut away won’t work. Your thoughts belong to you. Even if your writing sees the eyes of editors, publishers, copyright lawyers, your writing is yours. Make it personal. Make it yours. Some people are afraid of young minds being able to grow and change, form their own opinions. Don’t be one of those people. Don’t be afraid of yourself. Write.
Thank you for reading. Make sure to keep doing that, too. Reading will help you get better at writing. I hope that this article has inspired you to start.