Uncle Hyena (unclehyena) wrote,
Uncle Hyena

On Writing, Briefly

A short examination of my life as a writer.

I had always been good at the mechanics of communication, and I had always loved stories. I became addicted to a certain type of story that was, at the time, extremely rare. I decided to put my available skills to work filling that gap. I didn't have anything to say, mind you; I have never had anything to say.

I started to study story structure and human personality and anything that could possibly be relevant to the craft of storytelling (which is pretty much everything), and I acquired a huge body of knowledge, and an enormous skill set. But I still didn't have anything to say.

And then the market changed, and in the space of five years the available library went from contents of a smallish bookcase to the contents of a semi-trailer; in another five years, it filled a cargo ship, more than anyone could possibly consume, or even sample intelligently, in a lifetime. And just like that, my reason for wanting to write was gone. And I STILL didn't have anything to say.

Except... I was addicted. My quest to become a writer had reshaped my thought processes, and there was no going back. I COULD NOT STOP... but I still had nothing to say. For years I described myself as, "A failed writer, looking to lose the adjective." Eventually, I lost not the adjective, but the qualifying phrase. And that hurt. But a failed writer is still, at base, a writer. I still see the world through a writer's eyes; I can't STOP. I don't really WANT to stop. But I still don't have anything to say...

Uncle Hyena
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