As Sonny and Cher would say, The Beat Goes On. And it does. One thing leads to another and to another. In our cause and effect world that’s how it plays out. Things could be good or bad depending on our attitude. It’s our attitude that changes everything.
But for the writer, it’s more like Linda Ronstadt’s, The Beat of a Different Drum, our own drum. We set our own tempo, our own dynamics. We decide our own rhythm. It doesn’t matter what anyone else is playing. We do what we do because we must.
We see the world through different eyes and we’re driven to let people see what we see – the injustice, the evil, the unfairness of life. the cruelty, the pain . . . and the beat goes on. We long to give hope to a world gone bad, to lift up others, to keep their heads above water. And so we become vulnerable, at risk of exposing ourselves.
Such is the life of a writer.
But, back to attitudes. Regardless of the material we write, there is always an upside. We have within us an invisible sense of the flipside. We may write with all the horror we can imagine or have experienced. We can write with all the heartbreak relationships may cause. We can put our pen to paper and create a tricky mystery. Even if the villain kills our protagonist, in the end, good usually comes through.
We writers are a lonely breed. We may lock ourselves away and come out with a most beautiful piece of poetry. We may exit with a great comedic piece. We come out and have the ability to touch lives. I can’t get away from the thought that everything I have written that someone has read results in them taking a part of me. I’ve given myself to the task of writing because the beat goes on. I can either overlook it, avoid it, or confront it head-on.
But more than that, I’m thankful for the spoken word. As a pastor, I have the wonderful opportunity each week to speak words – hopefully, words of hope to a world gone bad, to lift up others, to keep their heads above water. Spoken or written, that’s my purpose. That’s my calling.
The meaning of life runs deep, deeper than most people want to face. I can only speak for myself, but I do think most writers are willing to take that look into the deep, dark crevasses of our soul. We bring it forth and put black on white. Others read and enter the crevasse with us. So, here’s my question – where are you leading them? La Da Da Da De.