Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas
Books don’t change the world, people change the world, books only change people. Mario Quintana
How many blog posts do people want to read is a question I’ve asked myself? Finding a balance between blogging, editing, work, family, and Toastmasters is a fine balance I haven’t quite mastered.
This blog takes up time and so does editing. Sometimes we have to make choices because putting our energy into one thing takes energy from something else. When I started this blog I put a lot of time and energy into it. I’ve been busily editing and that takes time away from the blog.
When I look at the people who really accomplish a lot in their lives I wonder how they do it. Are they really able to keep all their balls in the air or at some point do they crash and burn?
If I am ever to get my novel published it will take time to edit and make as good as I am capable of making it. Time only gets to be spent once and it is the morning hours that work best for me for writing. By the end of the day, there isn’t much left to put into writing.
My goal is to find balance, but balance is a very elusive thing. Sitting down to write a blog post every morning is easier than trying to write one sporadically. When I got up every morning and wrote a post they flowed quite easily. Today I struggle to put words together.
Writing is so many things and one of the most important things we can do if we write is to try and see things from someone else’s point of view. So much of our lives would be better if we found a way to walk in someone else’s shoes.
My husband, daughter and I were sitting outside the other night. My daughter asked if I would write a memoir. I told her probably not because in fiction I can tell the truth that would offend people in a memoir. We can take fifteen people’s lives and distill it all into one more interesting life. We can try and understand people’s motives and thoughts in fiction we can never do in real life.
We might not get it right but we can try and think how we would feel in situations, what would make us do things out of character, how our life could become derailed, and how we might react to the unthinkable.
Books can truly change our lives: the lives of those who read them, the lives of those who write them. Readers and writers alike discover things they never knew about the world and about themselves. Lloyd Alexander
Works of fiction have changed the thinking of readers by letting them see into the lives of people they can never know, situations they will never experience, and injustices they may overlook.
In fiction, we can see the truth of life in a way that a biography or memoir can’t show. Don’t we all ask, “What were they thinking?” In a novel the author tells us what they were thinking, we understand what motivated them, we see complex characters making the best and worst decisions, and the same character may be both heroic and villainous.
When we listen to the news we think that bad people only do bad things, and good people should only do good things but no one is all good or all bad. In our minds we tend to think if they’ve done one bad thing then they must be a horrible person.
Good writers create characters we know better than our own family. Now is a time we should try to figure out how situations escalate and get out of hand. How things we thought would make things better make things worse. How the civilization we have built up although not perfect is better than it was. We can explore through books what makes a good society and what destroys one.
There are stories to tell and some of the people who want us to understand their point of view should put it in a novel so we can understand from the character’s point of view the challenges and triumphs in life.
Think of the books that have impacted our lives. Maybe what we really need is more writers and more readers to understand each other better. It is even better when we have a group to discuss the book with.
They say there is a book in all of us. What if one of the big contributions we can make is to put our thoughts out into the world? Can we do it in a way that can be understood? Creating characters will make us look at all sides of issues because no matter how much we don’t understand what makes someone else tick, why they made that decision, or took that action, in their own mind at least for that moment it all made sense.
I don’t think books can change the world, but when the world begins to change, it searches for different books. Shlomo Sand
Books can be dangerous. The best ones should be labeled “This could change your life.” Helen Exley
Maybe this is why we read, and why in moments of darkness we return to books: to find words for what we already know. Alberto Manguel
Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.
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