The above quote is a favorite of mine. It speaks of me as a writer and how other people view me and other writers in the workplace.
As a background: I’ve been writing for a long time. Probably almost all my life. I remember getting good grades in English writing classes when I was in elementary and high school. I pursued journalistic writing in college, with the urging of a classmate, and joined the official student publication. Upon graduation, I worked as a copywriter before shifting to web content writing. In between, I built blogs, maintaining this one for sanity. Chos.
I don’t consider myself a really good writer; there are others who are more eloquent, who have a wider vocabulary, who can weave magic with words with careful research and planning.
And sometimes, this is the misconception about writers. That we just spit out amazingly good works in a snap. That coming up with good sentences, paragraphs, or copy is so easy for us to do.
When in fact, it’s a long creative process. That we have to get inspiration first, then find the right words, then put them all together in one cohesive, solid ball of idea.
Unfortunately, some people just don’t get it.
“Madali lang ‘yan, mabilis lang ‘yan sa ‘yo,” I’ve had colleagues tell me numerous times.
“Sulat-sulat lang ‘yan. Pwede na ba ‘yan mamaya, diba?”
They don’t understand that ideas take a while. To brew, filter, percolate.
Not just that — writers put their minds, hearts, and souls into that one line, one paragraph. We bleed, as Hemingway would say, and put that on paper, on screens. For people to read and understand and appreciate.
We don’t just spew random words. Unless we’re sh!tdrunk and angry. Look closely at every word used and you’ll see traces of blood and sweat, sometimes tears.
Writers are a proud bunch (in a good way, I hope you get that) and we take much pride in our output. That’s why I hope people don’t see writing as something minor in a whole creative process, regardless if you believe in that 60-40 rule.
Because writing IS a creative process in itself. Something that’s hard to quantify or delimit with time.
So the next time you think writers are slow in finishing their tasks, just remember that this is a process that takes time, effort, and research to get right.
Of course, you can do it on your own. But then, that’s why you need them, right?