By: Taylor H. (’21)
I always wish I could have two lives; one where I try my best to succeed and one where I can just do whatever I want. Coming from an Asian family, it’s always been expected that I would put forth my best effort in this life to succeed. This means always studying hard, always thinking before I speak. There’s never been an appropriate time to “mess up” or act on impulse.
This is one of the reasons I love writing stories. When I’m writing, I’m not myself. I get to experience things that I wouldn’t normally be able to without having to face the actual consequences that would come in real life. Say you really wanted to date someone who was older than you but you weren’t allowed to (or didn’t because you knew it was bad for you in the long run). Whatever the reason is that you didn’t do it, if you write about it, you can do it. You can explore the realistic consequences without it actually affecting you or you could create the perfect, most ideal version of that situation; the power is in your hands to make yourself feel better about your real life decision or explore something that you wouldn’t be able to before. Writing creates a “second life” for you in which you get to become someone else and live their life for a change.
Becoming somebody else temporarily doesn’t just let you live new experiences, but also lets you take on a whole new perspective. I’m a pretty optimistic person, but if I wanted to better understand more pessimistic people, I might try to write from that point of view. As the writer, you get to look at the world through another person’s eyes. It’s like you’re looking at the world with tinted glasses and feeling what they feel and seeing what they see. It can also serve as an outlet for your inner emotions. Say you’re feeling extremely sad about life at a certain moment; writing a character who sees the world from that perspective can help get those emotions out for the time being. You can then go into the real world knowing you didn’t just discard those emotions, but let them out somewhere safe.
A whole new world can also be created with writing. While we’re grounded by reality everyday, fairies and goblins and magic somehow become possible in the realm of writing. Places you could never afford to travel to are at your fingertips, or even places that aren’t real. You can explore your imagination within the world we live in in or create a new one entirely. I could travel to Paris or live under a bridge all while at the comfort of my desk. In short, the impossible is possible with writing, and this is why I’m proud to be an author who writes stories.