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When words become gold

I’ve been reading a lot in the evenings recently as a way to wind down. Few things are lovelier than cosying up with a great book, stepping into another world and becoming absorbed in the lives of the characters.

Often characters, scenes and events are inspired by real life. As I turn the pages of the books I love, I always wonder how the writers have lived, the experiences they’ve been through, the emotions they’ve felt, what it was they drew upon to make the pages come alive.

We are going through strange times right now. It’s not always easy and, for many, there is a lot of anxiety. But, when life changes dramatically, it can also provide an opportunity to reflect on past experiences, to see them in a new light, or take inspiration from the new world.

Sometimes life is wonderful and those experiences are celebrated. Falling in love. Getting the keys to a dream home. Holding a newborn baby. Other times, life seems to have no meaning at all. We lose someone we love. A job is lost. Illness knocks on our door. Life is unfair.

Writing can help us make sense of the world and, when there’s no sense to be found, we can at least throw anger onto the page, let tears fall, let the ink run.

Sometimes the only good that can come out of a situation is for lessons to be captured and shared in the form of a story, a poem or something else. Writing can help us spread important messages, it can help us be heard. It can help us celebrate the good and hold the bad to account.

Whether life is good, bad or somewhere in between right now, remember that your writing is always there for you. Maybe you’ll simply jot down this and that, maybe words will flow onto the page, maybe what you’re feeling spurs you to write something powerful, something memorable.

The purpose of what we write is not always clear but write anyway. In time, connections begin to appear. Feelings can become a character’s, emotions a poem, thoughts turn into a life-changing book.

Not all words will be read by another but all words lead somewhere.

They eventually become gold, a gift to give the world.

‘If you are a writer, or want to be a writer, this is how you spend your days – listening, observing, storing things away, making your isolation pay off. You take home all you’ve taken in, all that you’ve overheard, and you turn it into gold.’

― Anne Lamott
About Loretta Milan

Founder and Commissioning Editor of Lightbox Originals. On a mission to get the world writing and finding wellbeing through words. Loves books, tea, travel and art.

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