"Writing is arrogant." I don't remember where I've heard this before. Perhaps it was Ryan, The Grumpy Owl, who mentioned it to me first, and at the time I don't believe I gave it much thought, if at all. But I find myself thinking about these words every so often; they've landed somewhere in my brain and wouldn't leave. I was wondering what others are thinking about it -- is writing arrogant?
Well, on the one hand, writers assume that their word is important enough to be read. They assume they have something to say to the world that is of value (added). They assume they can teach / influence / affect people. They want their words to do that.
Then again, so does any other art form, no? Show me an artist who doesn't want his work to affect the person experiencing his art, and I'll call him on it. So does that means that art in itself is arrogant?
This concept pains me. I don't know why but it does.
Take even non-fiction writing, say articles. They have to sound authoritative to pass even the first acceptance level. Say blogs, this post. I make very strong statements and I make them in a way that sounds as if I believe I'm right (which I am, of course... :).
See why the concept pains me? Or is it me?
Take a fictional work, say a novel. You want your readers to be at the very least moved enough so they would turn the page. But you want more, no? What you really want is for them to cry and laugh, bite their nails and sigh in relief. You want them to think your words are important / interesting enough to be read. You want them to experience them same thing you do when you read a good book.
Is that such an arrogant thing to want to be able to affect people? Or is it something else?
Tags: writing, general