Tuesday, May 7, 2013

How to be Lonely in a Crowded Community

Writing for me has always been a release. I need a release today - so I am going to share my thoughts on something that some (but probably not all) of you can relate to.

Being lonely in a crowd.

Now if you are an extravert, you may be baffled by what I mean. But those of you who are introverts, don't need an explanation.

The following are some thoughts and feelings I have had over the past several years as I try to find my place in the writing community. Mostly this stems from still feeling like I don't fit in, despite my best efforts.

How to be Lonely in a Crowded Community

  1. Be different. Yes, I know, being a writer means you are inherently different. But I mean being different within the writing community. Here are some examples of how I am different:
    • I love prologues. No ands, ifs, or buts.
    • I like adverbs and will use them as I please.
    • I like dialog tags, and more specifically ones that are not 'said.'
    • I hate present tense.
    • I don't care for first point of view at all.
    I have noticed something about human nature. We tend to gravitate to people who think and feel the same as we do. So going against the grain has a way of isolating us.
  2. Express your different opinions. I am extremely opinionated. I think what I think and that is how I think. It takes a lot to change my mind. Especially about trivial, subjective things like those listed above. I believe in the free exchange of ideas, that is how we learn about the world around us and grow as people. This exchange requires that each person can express their opinion without being judged, and in return listens to the opinions of others without judging. I won't say I am perfect at this, but I try really hard.

    I think the problem in the writing community is that we pour our heart and souls into our writing (that is how me make it great, right?). And so it is hard to detach our emotions from the thoughts and feelings of other.

    This all goes back to that human nature thing. We tend to gravitate to those people who agree with us. Disagreeing sets us apart.

  3. Be Unique. Our nature is to avoid and even fear that which is different or that we do not understand. So being unique, though very important as a writer, can have side effects. Unique people find it hard to find people who are like them enough to form bonds of friendship and association. Being unique in a crowd can be very lonely.

The Moral of the Story

Be different. Express your different opinions. Be unique.

Wait, how does that solve the problem of being lonely in a crowded community, you ask? Did I ever say that being lonely was a problem? I don't believe I did. We should never give up ourselves to fit in. That is a lesson that took me years to learn, and which I often forget.

But being lonely is still hard, especially when you are surround by a sea of people you think you should fit into. And how do we over come that? I don't know. I am still searching for that answer. If you have any thoughts, I would love to hear them.

Do you feel lonely in the crowded writing community? How do you combat or accept that feeling of loneliness?

1 comment:

  1. Oh my! Being lonely is something that has been hitting me hard :P I'm still learning to accept being lonely, but I do love being different. Thanks so much for writing this post! (-: