Writing is bleeding…Ernest Hemingway definitely understood this. The awful chore of staring at a computer screen desiring to be heard, yet your mind wonders. Can I do this? Will I be any good? I have nothing to say…Even as I stare at this screen now I struggle. I struggle to make sure the words I am saying are poignant, and flow together in a concise manner.
The old cliché saying “blood, sweat, and tears” is so on target for the writing process. But instead of bleeding, like Ernest Hemingway said, I believe instead we are giving blood because writing is personal. Writing is a part of us just like the unique cells that make up our blood. And giving blood isn’t a something you work at, it’s a sacrifice. Self-sacrifice. Writing is not about the self. If my writing is only put on the page to bring me glory, then I am not a writer…And writing isn’t a grade, I write because I have something to say.
Writing must be about releasing the story that is within us and handing it over to the public world. Even if this brings intense shame, and doubt upon us. Just like how giving blood can save the life of someone who is sick, a story, a thought, a memoir…these all have the capability to do the same in our hearts.
I believe all writers have been given a story, and we can bleed it out of us, or we can die with it still within us.