It’s something not everyone possesses. I like to think of myself as an eloquent person, and I hope you agree from reading my blog. But eloquence can be very difficult to achieve sometimes.
I am writing this on the way to my cousin’s wedding in Texas. I’m sitting in an airplane, 30,000 feet (or so) above the ground. It’s a bumpy ride, and I can’t help thinking that is a metaphor for the life of a writer.
I have decided to leave the comfort of my paycheque and my job at the end of June. My plan is to get a part time job and start freelance writing. I have already had quite a few freelance jobs, and I am in the process of setting up more arrangements. It’s all quite exciting (another E word), but I’m also scared, I have to admit. With a part time job, I will have the security of some regular income. But the rest all has to come from the writing. And finding writing jobs, and securing them, takes eloquence. And it will surely be a bumpy ride. I will probably beg my parents for money in between. But I have to rely on my writing skills – my eloquence – to get by.
I have been told that I am a good writer. My father thinks I’m the best writer in the world, but of course, he has to say that. I think I don’t always trust in my abilities, even though I know they’re not too shabby. I believe some of this comes from modesty, and the fact that I believe if you think you have learned it all, you are sorely mistaken. There is always something new to learn, whether you’re an up and comer writing in the Starbucks on the corner or J.K. Rowling. (And I think J.K. Rowling would agree.) I also realize, however, that a writer has to sell herself and her art. She has to sell her eloquence.
Some days are better than others, of course. Sometimes words flow out of me with ease. Sometimes it is like – as the old expression goes – pulling teeth. But I have learned in all the years I’ve been writing that you have to just sit down and do it. Puke the words out onto the page (or the word processor). You can always edit later. Words can be replaced with those that are more eloquent. Sentences can be rearranged. It’s not the end of the world if you have a bad writing day. The point is to write. That is all that matters.
I wish I could say that eloquence comes to me naturally. But oftentimes, it doesn’t. I’m not sure it does for most writers. I imagine even the writers who crank out several novels a year (*cough* Tom Clancy *cough*) have days where they are lost for words. (And many of those writers who seem to be unstoppable also hire ghostwriters, let’s be honest…Not to mention sometimes their work isn’t actually written well, but it’s easy to read and has a good plot, so it keeps people coming back and turning pages.)
I think I’d rather not be a writer who has it easy. I think in the end, that would be boring. I want to work for the money I make, look back and say, “I put my blood, sweat, and tears into that work.” When I was in middle school, I wanted to be the youngest published writer. That never happened, but it doesn’t matter. From years of writing crap and writing great pieces, I have learned so much. I want to get published sometime in my life – not just my freelance writing, but a novel. I think it will happen, someday. For now, someday is good enough.
Eloquence. It’s a word I can’t always apply to myself and my writing, but it’s a word that sometimes fits. And that is good.
***This post is part of the Blogging from A-Z April challenge. Starting with A, every post in April will be about a topic starting with a letter of the alphabet, consecutively. For more information, please visit the official page.***