That Was Brilliant Before

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I love writing. I have since before I could write. One of the things I love the most about writing is that I am a genius. My prose and poetry is brilliant. I thoroughly enjoy going back and reading those things I've written that speak directly to the human condition, elicit long lost emotions and share insights into the darkest recesses of human knowledge.

But here's the catch: I hate listening to others read my stuff.

The luster is gone. My thoughts sound like inane babble. My gorgeous mastery of the English language is suddenly replaced with a hideous cacophony of poor sentence structure and pathetic reasoning. I'm an idiot. I should never write again.

Sometimes this reality strikes me when I revisit old passages and posts. I look upon a foreign text, something that could not possibly have flowed from my thoughtful and practiced fingers. I am disgusted. And then I wonder: Why do people read this stuff?

I've been revisiting some of my older posts.

For those of you who waded through those early days of blogging for Sonlight, I commend you! Thanks for swinging by and encouraging me. Your presence here spurred me onward to where I am today.

Today, though, I'm more wary of my writing. I read articles about how, if I were a good blogger, I'd write about you more than about me. I would ask questions more than make statements. My confidence shattered I wonder: Why does anyone read this blog?

Why do you read this blog? What makes you come back here again and again?

They--whoever "they" are--suggest that you be yourself on your blog. "Don't fake it," these nameless gurus say. And so I don't. I continue in my narcissistic outpouring of thoughts and experiences.

Is this one of the beautiful things of a good education--to love what we do and find pleasure in it?

I think so.

My parents let me explore my abilities, praised my efforts and continued to nudge me to hone my strengths. That, in turn, made learning a joy. And as we master things, the doing becomes fun as well. Which is likely why I love writing and find my words so insightful.

That's not to say that tears and correction are not a part of the struggle to master something. But I believe a slightly irrational belief in one's own brilliance is a boon to learning how to produce brilliant things.

Do you see that in your own children or in your life?

 ~Luke Holzmann
Filmmaker, Writer, Surrogate Father

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