Monday, 3 November 2014

The Conflict between Writing as a Hobby and Writing for School

Source: Nabsticle

I’ve just sat down to do a bit of free writing. Just on a spontaneous whim. Just to let my thoughts flow, to splash messily on a blank page and allow my words to dance in majestic twirls so that it only makes sense to me. However as my fingertips hover over my keyboard, my eyebrows narrow in deep concentration, nothing happens.

I’m not writing for a piece of English coursework or for my blog, I’m simply doing it because I love it. I hit a bit of a barrier as if a mystical force had built a dam and no water was being allowed to pass through, not even a faint trickle. And it made me unexpectedly realise that sometimes when I write to please and impress others with strict word counts or elements I’m forced to include, it can steal and trample the fun out of a hobby.

When writing for others it can sometimes bring about the need for justification. Why did your character have red hair? Are you trying to foreshadow the fiery explosion that is going to happen at the end? No, I’m not. My character has red hair because I want my character to have red hair.

Writing is a form of art. Perhaps an outlet to express, to convey a message to the world, a scream for help, a means of fitting into this abstract world. It’s beautiful. Yet when people create impediments that force me to think differently or in a way that makes sense to others rather than myself then that’s where a problem arises.

Being an English student I’ve been told how and what to write and it quite honestly sucks. I have a limit to the word count and find teachers getting irritated when I try to express my personality through the words I write. It’s not arrogance and I really am grateful for all their help but I want to write in my style. They’re my thoughts and what runs wild through my mind at the strangest of times so why are other people trying to change what I’m thinking so the examiners can understand it? Maybe I don’t want to include parenthesis or some form of hyperbole because it’s just not me.

When I spend countless stressful hours putting 110% effort into a piece of coursework for my teacher to tell me to change it after hurriedly skimming through because it doesn’t match the criteria it hurts. When I’m told to justify my choices for what my characters said or the choice of clothing they wore it hurts. A writer should not be forced to validate why they did something, creative juices flow when they do and inspiration comes to us at the most unexpected times. The last thing I want to do is force dishonest words into my work.

I understand that I won’t get the desired grade if I do things my own way and perhaps I am being stubborn and difficult. But when others are stealing the joy out of something I so immensely enjoy then I’m going to have to put a stop to it. To make things even worse their friendly faces transform to disgust and annoyance when I question them and defend my work. Why should I have a semantic field of light or include a religious theme because that is certainly not what I was going for. Am I so inferior to them because they have a degree? A mere piece of paper does not give anyone the right to put others down.

No one is going to steal my passion for something I love so dearly, for something that has taught me lessons I wouldn’t have learnt any other way, improved me and brought me so much elated joy. I refuse to allow anyone to change my writing and muzzle me for having an opinion.  I’m not going to allow them to suppress my outlet, my message, my screams for help and my way of finding my place in this world.

I know my writing is insignificant, minuscule and simply nowhere near as good as some of the talented bunch we have here in the blogosphere but that’s okay.

To some it may be a matter of putting random shapes and symbols into some chronological order to form words, sentences, stories but that’s not the case for me. Writing to me is like breathing life back into a lost soul, allowing the thrill and adrenaline, the adventure and confidence to flow through my body and dance to the beat of my fingers tapping away at the keyboard. The conflict is rife and often troubling but I will not allow the education system to destroy the strong devotion I possess for writing; something that, for me, creates meaning and purpose in this disorientating world.


  1. Your writing is incredible. I thoroughly enjoy reading your blog.

    1. Oh my gosh thank you so much that means a lot! x

  2. This is a really great blog, your writing skills are absolutely amazing!!! I love your take on what writing is to you. Great post! Would you like to follow each other on GFC?! Let me know and follow me on my blog, I will follow you right back on both GFC and Bloglovin!

    1. Thank you very much Annie!! I've followed you on Bloglovin', the link to my Bloglovin' is at the bottom of this post! :) xx