The Writer: Episode #2

“Writers are desperate people and when they stop being desperate they stop being writers.”Charles Bukowski

Desperate. Is there a single writer out there who wasn’t?

Desperate. The Writer was. The Writer is.

Desperate to assume the world, to conquer it, to explore it, to understand it, to define it. To find meanings in all the beauty that hides in plain sight.

Desperate. To know who he is, what is he’s place in the world.

Oh, it’s not what this is all about?

Is it about some other form of desperation? How many forms are there?

Too many to count.

Indeed.

The Writer remembers having to struggle to find the time to write. Back when he had lots of money (being delivered to him in cash because he’d smile at Father) and lots of friends. Then he remembers having nothing but time to write, yet nothing but air to eat.

Maybe that’s a bit over the top. Maybe it’s true. Who knows?

What’s the difference between a liar and a writer?

One of them writes down his best lies.

They say comfort is the enemy of progress.

Maybe comfort is also art’s greatest enemy.

Maybe we all write in order to escape hell.

The Writer can remember that. Hell. It felt as if there was something that made him feel different. Doomed. Destined to forever be alone, empty, and marginalized by others.

He felt as if life was a mystery he’d never understand.

That was his hell.

Other people being happy and foolish and young and never having to worry about the big things in life.

The BIG THINGS.

The ones that torment one’s soul.

Or maybe it was loneliness that tormented the writer’s soul.

We’ll never know.

But he was desperate. Sure he was. As sure as death and taxes, he wrote and wrote and wrote as a means of escaping hell. He built a prison of words just so he could say he was free.

Desperate.

One simple word to describe anyone who ever picked up a pen instead of a gun and used it to escape the uncertain cruelty of the world.

4 thoughts on “The Writer: Episode #2

  1. Desperate is a good word to pick apart. Like you say there are so many interpretations of being desperate.
    I’ve seen where a lot of people write about the “tortured/tormented writer”….with the view that unless a writer suffers for his art, he will never produce his (or her) finest work. I’m not 100% convinced of that though. I’m sure that there are many excellent writers – past and present – who couldn’t be put into the “tortured or suffering” bracket.

  2. I think creative people, writers and artists, do their work to escape the hell of trying to find meaning in the small things and failing to do so – becoming desperate – because they know that the BIG LIFE QUESTIONS and BIG THINGS really do count. They therefore tend towards a very different value system. A truly powerful post!

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