Hope everyone is recovering easily from the time change. I do not recommend traveling over the end of Daylight Saving Time. It’s been a little tough the last day. I spent all day out roaming the wilderness and forgot to post this morning, so sorry it’s late. This is a post from my friend, Katie. Thank you, Katie!
Hello everyone. I’m Katie (not Kate), from England. Regrettably, I am not the Duchess of Cambridge – I’ve never even been to Cambridge – but another Katie from a bit further north. I hope you can get over your disappointment about that fact, although if the Duchess is reading, I am convinced that Elizabeth would welcome a guest post from you too. (This is true. – ec)
Whilst we’re on the subject of places I’ve never been, though, I feel it’s important, given Elizabeth, to offer up another apology and confession right here: I have never been to Oklahoma. It’s shocking, I know. My apologies, maybe I’ll make it there one day. I’ve never been to anywhere else in the USA either. Or outside of Europe. Since 2009 I’ve never even left this country and I don’t currently have a passport. Thank God for the internet though, and getting to know some wonderful people from many different places around the world, including Elizabeth.
I’m always a little surprised and honoured that she even lets me actually speak to her, let alone write a guest post, which is totally to do with me and being in awe of the cool kids, but I am glad to have this opportunity.
Elizabeth, as we all know, is a writer, and one of the many concerns of being a distinctive writer is having a unique way to tell a story; finding a fresh way of presenting an old idea. Making a story worth listening to just because of the person telling it, whether or not the tale in itself is riveting. I call it “having the art of the story-teller,” but I think it is more commonly known as finding one’s “voice” as a writer.
A bizarre thought struck me from that beginning, though, which is, are writers the only people for whom this attribute is valuable? This sounds strange, I know, but don’t we need to help everyone, writer or otherwise, find their unique voice for their contribution to society, for the story of their life they are constructing?
How to go about doing this is another question entirely, of course, and there are many books and professionals around helping people to achieve this very goal. I am an accountant, so I am not one of those people.
The further thought that struck me though, is perhaps even more puzzling, if one is approaching this from a writer’s perspective: do writers actually have it easier in this regard than the rest of society do? I realise that, if true, this is a bold assertion to make. I survived nearly six months in a writing competition last Autumn/Winter, and I know how easy it is to fall into the trap of using clichés (I even did it again just there!), and how difficult it is to craft something unique from the same starting blocks that everyone else is using.
However, it takes a certain amount of self-assurance to put pen to paper and call oneself a writer. It takes a certain tenacity to believe that one genuinely has a valid story to tell. This is where I do think it is true that writers have an advantage compared to the rest of society, because if one has what it takes in order to declare oneself a writer, then one is generally half way there to scribing a personal, eventful, worthwhile story with one’s life.
“She discovered, under layers of silliness and eager to please, [herself]. … and [that] the really important thing [was] to be yourself, just as hard as you could.” Pg. 97, Good Omens, Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman.
Good luck to us all on this journey.