Anyone who has ever attempted to write – whether it be poems, prose, fiction, non-fiction – knows the saying “write about what you know”. And of course, if you don’t “know” of very much, that’s going to be hugely difficult. But if you write about what you know, it’s all based on your own experiences, your feelings, and your thoughts. It has to be personal, right?
Of course, in a social media society, where we’re overwhelmed by technology on a daily basis, the old ways are going out of the window. Who writes letters anymore? I think the last time I wrote a letter was in my first few weeks at university, to my two closest friends from home. And looking back at those (which I still keep in a folder on my bookcase), the big problem is that I can’t read the other half of the conversation.
Writing 0: Email 1.
My inspiration always used to come from my thoughts and feelings. But then those thoughts and feelings were processed through the cold hard plastic of a laptop keyboard, thrown together onto a stark white background and transformed into letters on a screen. A far cry from the passion whirling through my brain as I wrote.
Even now, I don’t seem to be able to write poetry like I used to. Not that it was ever any good, but I used to be able to sit, doodle, write things in a notebook – each wrong word was scribbled out a good five times (I never learned in school when I was told to use one neat line). The personal touch to the personal words. But now, it’s notes made on my iPhone as I sit (rarely) on the Tube, when a thought flies at 90 miles an hour through my brain, desperately making a break for freedom before I can write it down.
Does anyone write any more? Or do we all just tap at the keyboard in an attempt for inspiration?