Why I Write


Taking a page from Joan Didion, who took a page from George Orwell, why I write is to dig at and probe my truths. I agree with them that writing is an inherently selfish act, like when I was younger and kept a secret diary (though I refused to call it a diary) of my deepest, darkest secrets, kept all for myself. My own teenage (and “tweenage”) angst was (and is) the last thing I would want to see published. Yet ironically, some of my best writing centers on myself. It’s like I’m stuck in a shell and fighting to crawl out. I can only honestly answer the most serious questions about myself through writing—though it is not my default. 

Though I enjoy writing, it is not my go-to creative practice—which would be my artwork. However, the fine arts are a highly drawn-out process and are left to the viewer’s interpretation. My writing is more direct. When I write about myself, I can express what I am feeling at and in the moment. Spontaneous and sometimes raw is okay in private, and I think that the real reason I joined the Blotter is that I want to hone my writing further, so I feel more confident leaving it in the public eye. 

My writing often feels too intimate for sharing. Unlike my sketched lines and charcoal smudges, it never seems “finished,” as if there’s always some undiscovered or unexpressed truth hidden beneath. I continue to work on chipping away at these barriers with the encouragement of my mentors and peers. 

George Orwell remarked that his best works were about the things he cared for passionately. Though some might say there is not much passion in writing articles for a school newspaper, I like to think that there is always room for self-expression. 


George Orwell’s “Why I Write”: Orwell Foundation

Joan Didion’s “Why I Write”:Lit-Hub