Writing is not, at its core, a quiet pursuit. Though our mouths may be silent, only whispered comments coming out and those aimed at ourselves, authors do not experience silence in the strictest sense.
Our minds are loud, obnoxious, screaming things that prod us on to write. Manifest destiny with pen and ink, we must conquer those notebooks, those characters, and in a very real sense, those pieces of ourselves that were trying to make a run for it. No, writing is not a silent endeavor. Writing is an unheard siren, and scream of many voices clashing together in our heads.
Those who write use all five senses and then some, occasionally seven or eight to be honest, carving out plotlines that titillate and concern, excite and dismay, whatever it is that will draw our audience in to our lives. We use all of these to create a world, the world, all worlds, your world, so that we can bring it to you and allow you, the reader, the experience of a lifetime within the confines of a cover. Some authors redefine their genres, some create new genres, and some merely work within the confines of their chosen field.
Like alchemists, we are always mixing and making, pushing ingredients or ignoring the laws of physics. Though we may not seem to be moving, we may not seem to listening, we may not even seem to be alive at times, the sights and sounds within our heads are more real, more vibrant, than any can tell. We watch the world around overlay the world within. Bird calls mix with dragon roars, time machines whiz down the street, the old west lays out in the middle of the grocery store, and conversations integrate themselves. We people watch, we listen, and we create. Creativity cannot exist in silence, in darkness; there is always a light, there is always a sound, there is always another story screaming to be acknowledged. Writing is not a quiet pursuit.
Some authors have cracked under the self-imposed pressure, using alcohol or drugs to numb the mind and silence the overwhelming cacophony. Others ignore the calling and hope that the sound will eventually die down on its own if they bury themselves in other pursuits. Still there are some who lock themselves away to write and come out refreshed, vibrant, and more than a little cocky. Each one must deal with their inner voices in their own way, and each one’s insanity helps to create the world which they present to the world.
All in all, writing is deafening and that deafness is how you know you’re doing it right. A clean, organized, silent mind is the enemy of the creative process and creates blocks to success. Stories burst forth from madness, and the pursuit of writing is the pursuit of that madness.
Buy a good hat to distract from the look behind your eyes, ignore the people who give you strange looks, and always carry pen and paper with you no matter where you go. Once you learn to distinguish between the voices inside your head and the ones beside you, you are good to go! But never forget that writing is not a quiet, sedentary pursuit. Writing is a rock concert in your head. Embrace it.