All the moments that make up a human being have to be written about, talked about, painted, danced, in order to really talk about life. –Rita Dove, Ohio native, Pulitzer Prize winner, and former U.S. Poet Laureate

Free image courtesy of KathrynMaloney at

The above quote is from an old interview with Rita Dove in which she talks about her background and her decision–not until college–to try to become a writer. “I always thought [writing] was something that you did as a child, then you put away childish things,” she said. “I didn’t know writers could be real live people, because I never knew any writers.”

There it is, isn’t it? This writing thing: childish, right? Ever feel guilty about writing? I do. Especially the writing I do that doesn’t buy groceries. Why? Because it’s unnecessary, a luxury, an escape, mere child’s play.

Or is it?

Maybe writing, as Rita Dove says, is essential to this life we’re all living here–necessary to becoming part and parcel of this existence.

What do you think?

Now…go write.

But first, sample Rita Dove’s poetry here at Kenyon Review with “Concert at Hanover Square” and try–I dare you–to forget the gray mice image!


11 thoughts on “a bit of writerly advice…for Sept. 13, 2018

  1. I like to write, but the whole process does not come naturally to me at all. Most of the time I sit and search for things that compel me or I’m passionate about, and even that sometimes doesn’t do it. I think some people are just “naturally” wired to write, which is a good thing. I will continue to struggle, but I don’t mind because it does help the creative process to seek the words and to make them count.

    Always love your posts.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks–as always–for checking out my post! I think you’re right, in that the struggle is real and can produce some of the best writing. As for feeling compelled to write, I do think that it’s natural to create in cycles: there are times I’m writing like crazy; other months I’m reading a ton; others I’m just getting out there and living. I’m always impressed with what you have to say–combined with your view of the world as presented in your photographs. Hope you keep up the good fight!


  3. I have enjoyed writing for years keeping a journal – but only the past couple of years have I had the courage to begin sharing my writing with others – newspaper column and my blog. I write just for the joy I get when someone tells me my column or my blog made them laugh or encouraged them or any reaction.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Even if we mostly write for ourselves–out of pure enjoyment of the craft–it’s wonderful when we can really connect through the written word, isn’t it? I’m so glad you stopped by my blog–thank you. And I hope you keep sharing with others!


  4. Writing has always been an outlet for me. Even as a preteen & teenager. I’ll get an idea swirling around & it eats away at me until I get it down in a notebook somewhere. It’s been a process (and still is) to put some of my writing on a blog for “the world” to see. It’s scary! 😬

    Liked by 1 person

    1. YES–channel that anxiety into story. I’m with ya! I understand it can be scary to share our creative efforts with the world, but that’s part of writing, right? Putting it in front of readers. And with a blog name like yours, I had to check it out. Such fun! (I also have a major RBF!)

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Writing’s been such a lifesaver for me this year – it’s allowed me to express myself clearer, connect with other readers who enjoy creative art for its own sake, and even writing badly can give you great new ideas for future stories. 😀

    Great post! If you like, I was thinking of nominating you for the Sunshine Blogger Award. There’s no need to participate in the quiz if you’d prefer not to, it’s mainly to broaden awareness of interesting blogs for new readers to check out. Might you be interested in taking part?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Here here. Writing is wonderful therapy; I’m so glad you also find it a lifesaver! Yes, the best practice for writing well is writing–period. And thanks so much for chiming in here. I checked out your blog and am following–looking forward to reading your stories. About the Sunshine Blogger Award, I was recently nominated by another blogger and have yet to answer the questions (I was attempting to do NaNo), but will later this week. So, I’ll have to decline your kind offer. Thank you–and happy writing!

      Liked by 1 person

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