Good writing seems useless nowadays, discarded amidst thoughts condensed and crushed to meet a minimum word count. Its true essence forgotten, good writing is all too often shoved aside for the quicker, shorter, newer means of expression. Has society lost its purest form of communication in a new age of texting and 140-character word limits?
Good writing is hard to find anymore. From a young age, we have been taught to keep our chins up, eyes down, and mouths shut. In the classroom, students roll their eyes and scoff if we share an idea that consumes more than a mere 30 seconds of their time. We have learned to remain silent in fear of ridicule based upon our beliefs and words.
This silence has transferred from our mouths to our pens to our papers. It is the cause of our generation’s lack of eloquence and our fear to spread what we believe and change the opinions of those who doubt us. It is the reason good writing is creeping toward extinction.
Good writing is brave. It does not cower in the face of adversary; it stands and screams at the top of its lungs and does not stay silent when the rest chooses to do so. It is not condensed in fear of offense or ridicule. It refuses censorship when others challenge what it stands for.
Good writing is not the result of societal norms but the introduction of unprecedented alterations to an outdated system of beliefs. It lacks the fear of change so deeply rooted in the majority. It is the breaking point when prejudices have gone too far.
Good writing sparks revolutions. The power of the written word is capable of attracting unexpressed emotions to the surface and forcing them to bubble over. Thomas Paine’s pamphlet Common Sense was the tipping point for American colonists to begin the battle for independence. Its novel ideas spread to the hearts of colonists, opening their eyes to the potential of the future. Good writing can spark both indignation and pride with the slightest stroke of a pen.
Good writing is visual music; words flow across the page like notes of a symphonic melody. It’s calming, intense, and heartbreaking in the same paragraph. It allows our spirits to leave our bodies for a period of time and connect with similar individuals who are oceans apart. A well-written story grounds us while simultaneously granting our minds the opportunity to explore worlds, cultures, and ideas that have never occurred to us before we turned the first page.
Good writing is vital to the survival of our history. It conserves our stories and lessons, sharing them with future generations. Protecting humanity from repeating its failures, good writing is the foundation of tomorrow. It is a necessary practice in avoiding both minor conflicts and world wars by emphasizing the importance of holding the past in comparison with the future. It allows for us to continue our lives with peace and stability.
Good writing cannot be lost. It cannot be condensed, crushed, broken, or forgotten. Its protection is insurance of the survival of the human race. Instead of limiting our language, our words must be allowed to flourish into rhymes and metaphors and fictional universes. If good writing is lost, society will follow down the same path.
Longwood, Florida, USA