Posted by: Corri van de Stege | October 22, 2008

Write on Wednesday – Everybody write!

Do I write every day?  I suppose I do: yes and no.  I write e-mails, draft reports, answer questions (in writing), write up notes  of interviews, research, etc.  In a way, writing is what I do, it’s part of my job and it’s the part I love.  However, I don’t think that is what Becca is referring to, when she asks

How about you?  Do you make time to write every day?  Don’t you think everybody should?

It’s a lovely question, and your first inclination is to say ‘yes, of course, what a good idea!’   (And yes, I aspire to do just that: practice fiction writing)

However, there are different approaches to writing, and this question as such needs clarification.  You can write in a way that

Teachers write

Families / relatives / friends write (to each other)

Researchers write

Journalists write


There are so many different ways of writing, all of which can be and are meaningful, and all of which can be just so much scribbling….    No, I  don’t think everyone can write in a way that will captivate me (and others); I’ve read too many reports / books / letters / notes… that just don’t impress me as anything that I want to continue with. 

So perhaps I don’t think that everyone is a writer and I disagree that everyone should be writing.  Some people write better than others, and it is something that needs nurturing and that needs practicing.  I read this weekend in one of the newspapers that in order to be good at anything you need to put in at least 1000 hours of practice, whether that is sport, art, performance, acting, .. and I assume that includes writing.  Some people are just better at this than others, let’s be honest. 

Perhaps the question is really about whether it is ‘good’ for one’s soul (whatever that is) to release one’s feelings and thoughts but not everyone has that urge, I’m sure.  I don’t think that writing is a unique expression of creativity, there are many others: painting, performing, sculpting, composing, playing music, etc.  So, my answer is, no, I don’t think everyone should be writing!

Nevertheless, I certainly enjoy writing .  Good writing is an art as well as something that one needs to practice, needs to learn how to do well. Just as sculpting, or performing, or painting, are.  Writing is just one of many ways in which human beings express themselves.



  1. I was in it and now I’m completely out of the writing mindset. The ten days out of country were the start and now that I’m home, I am completely obsessed and distracted by our election. I’ve decided to just let it be and not force it. Once the election is over, I am sure life will resume…I hope!

  2. lisakenney: lovely to see you back and hope you had a great time! Don’t worry, it’ll all be stored for later and I understand your obsession with the election – even I am and I cannot vote in this one! Sometimes there are other things in life that will then (lateron) inform your writing and reading.

  3. I imagine that you can (or do) keep a remarkable “train” journal. In fact, several blogs ago, you DID share one of your “observing” pieces with us.

    I will write that book with banking as the main action throughout (remember that, also several blogs ago?) if you will publish your “train travels.”

    Always always good to read you.

  4. oh: I’ll work on it! Glad you’re taking up the bankers challenge. Mine might take a while – will do some more train journeying over the next few weeks and keep it in mind though – ‘train travels’ eh? 🙂 that’s a thought.

  5. I keep a journal in which I scribble my random thoughts, daily reflections and book reviews. Some has a knack for words and others fare better with conversations.

  6. Matt: I think it is hugely important to keep scribbling… It helps to ‘organise’ and then, much later, pick out the random thoughts that actually make up the story… Does that make sense?

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