I’m over at the Huffington Post Books site today, talking about the matter of which of us can claim the right to write. You can read the whole piece, titled ‘Word After Word After Word,’ over there. Here’s an excerpt:
Somehow, people always seem to assume that a non-lucrative profession such as writing or painting or dancing or acting must mean that talent and determination have little or nothing to do with success. That no sacrifice has been made, only indulgence. I feel the same flare of annoyance that other artists do in such moments, and I often rant about it around the dining table. Why then do I always ask people – at book club gatherings, at readings, at festivals, at book signings, “do you write?”
I ask the question because most people do, or would like to write. I ask it because at some point or the other most people have weighed the stories that they carry and wondered how to tell them. A long time ago and not so long ago and around bedtime still, the tradition of story-telling is verbal. Parents and siblings make up stories. We make them up to disguise hurts, to impart advice, to cheer and to guide. How natural then to feel competence? How natural to feel that the stories that we tell each other are just as worthwhile as the stories we read on a printed page?
Feel free to read over there and post over here. I’d love to hear what people think about the topic.