Monday, May 2, 2016

Writing for those who hate writing or are afraid of writing... say it out loud in writing

There are times when I wondered if I was blood related to my family because everyone in my family was art-inclined. They liked music, singing, and can draw with ease (in my opinion). While... I became an engineer and been blamed for being too logical. All the notes seem the same to me, drawing out of the line was blasphemous, and I cannot sing (still can't). Although there are a billion stories, I think we get the gist of my difference in the family.

But I suppose good is relative, like how some of my college classmates felt inadequate compared to the other students in a top tiered university. Yet I would hire any of them in a heartbeat in place of some of the coworkers I have had to deal with in the past.

I do occasionally sketch-draw cards for people. Primarily because it has a greater personal impact in relation to the cost of the card (free versus $5 at a store). Later in life, I found it to be good practice for the artistic side of me. Everyone says that I am good. At first, I thought they were just being nice. But after some time, you can tell when they seem to be saying it genuinely. So like my drawing, I also picked up writing because I wanted to share my ideas. And as I continued to write, I found different ways to write. And now when I read, I can see some of the structure of how other people write.

Although I cannot change your hatred towards writing or fear of writing, I can only suggest that you should start (or continue) writing even if you are the only reader like this blog of mine. Even just learning the difficulties of writing is worth the experience in understanding other people from a different perspective.

What should you start writing about? It does not need to be a book, a short-story, or even a blog. Even writing a review is good enough or even a tweet. Write how your day was, what you think is right or what was wrong. Write why your favorite color is your favorite color. Write that the food at A is better than B, or that it was comparable or it depends on certain factors.

Do not be afraid to write even if there is no reason or have no answer. Like, I do not know why my favorite colors keep shifting between blue, green, and black... yet blue and orange has a special meaning for me (the repressed school pride that I claim that I don't have?). I don't know why I enjoy being sarcastic all the time. They say it is because I am trying to hide something. It could be true, or it may not. I really don't know. And if you don't want to publish it, don't publish it. But try not to delete it, although there is nothing wrong with that either. Write on little scraps of paper. I wrote in a tiny notepad while I was on the plane. I wrote why the flight attendant was not smiling.

Once you have written a few things (this could be days, weeks, months, or even years), you should review what you have written. Try to figure out what you are trying to convey. Write about writing, write why your writing is so random, but pick up tidbits of what worked for you and if you are ambitious, what did not work for you?

Why write? I think we all succumb to our own beliefs and take for granted that others should know exactly how we are thinking or feeling without considering that they really do not. Even if we think that we are open-minded, we may not be as open-minded as we think we are. Even when I thought that I was open-minded, it embarrasses me to admit that positive-reinforcements (especially from my mom) has made my ego greater than it should be... no matter how hard I try to see through it. And the same goes with negative-reinforcements where my self-worth is lower than it should be at.

Writing is the mirror of communication. You can see how your ideas are delivered, how they fit together, how there is always a flaw and room for improvements. And like a mirror, we still need to be careful on our perception of the reflection. The flaw is like the blemish that you think everyone sees, but what everyone really sees is something else.

And to take this one more level, don't be afraid to try something that you are not good at. Although you may never be as good as your circle or even the majority of people, it is a good exercise to empathize, understand others, and really appreciate their talents.