Writing For What?

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic

Thoughts on writing


Writing For What?


I think it was Thursday afternoon, after I came home from treatment. I decided to transcribe a few poems from the notes app on my phone into my current poetry notebook.


I have several. One of which is a journal, of sorts, that has its humble origins in Mrs. Steenmeir’s creative writing class at A. J. Dimond High School in Anchorage, Alaska. THAT one is an interesting multi-media combination that’s half scrapbook/half poetry. It contains drawings and doodles and little keepsakes. Magazine clippings and party favors. Memories.


I think we were supposed to turn those journals in once a week, or something. I forget. I didn’t spend much time in Steenmeir’s class. 


She was a good teacher. One of those hippified types. I remember that she would play the soundtrack from “Jonathan Livingston Seagull” during class and have us write about what we thought was happening.  Crazy shit like that.


Some of the other notebooks in between that first one and the current receptacle of my mental ramblings share a few of those characteristics; written thoughts, dreams, reflections.


My latest poetry notebook is strictly poetry. There’s just too much of it. Not all of it worthy of any kind of written record. But I write it down anyway.


My iPhone is a couple of years old and is beginning to act up. I won’t get into all that, but I figure it’s not a terrible idea to get my stuff out of the phone and onto the old school paper page.


I have a wooden pen that I use to transcribe my stuff.  My Brother’s former boss makes these really nice wooden pens. It’s pretty much all that I use that particular pen for; scribbling my crappy poetry into a notebook that, in all likelihood, no eyes besides mine will ever see.


I’m way behind in getting these words from the digital page to the paper page. But I guess it doesn’t really make much difference.  I mean, I’m no Walt Whitman. I write for my own entertainment, to purge my inner demons, or just as a form of mental calisthenics. It gives me something to do.


Overall, I have more than 200 different poems in my notes app. That’s not counting the other miscellaneous articles, essays, half written ideas and Facebook posts that also linger there. There is a ton o’ clutter. Some 834 “notes”.  I doubt that this is what the folks at Apple had in mind when they designed this app. But what do I know.  I guess I’d rather have them cluttering up my phone’s memory than my own.


Why bother?  To what end? There’s nothing to be gained from the exercise, really.  One day at some undetermined point in the future I will cease to be. When that happens, these notebooks will cease to have any value, importance, relevance or value. They will fall into a landfill or fireplace and it will be as if they never existed at all.


All of the thoughts and words that I took the time to stack and to craft and form into these heretofore unrecorded rhythms and patterns and formulas of cognitive recognition will be erased, extinguished like my own light, only to return from whence they came; back to the wisps and vapors...and shadows...wherein inspiration is born.


Just like that.


People have told me that I should write a book. Lots of people. Now maybe they’re just referring to my habit of rambling on and on, lost in the tangle of my own thoughts...like I am right now. The equivalent of saying to a couple “get a room already!” Only for me it’s “write a book!”  Maybe that’s just their polite way of telling me to shaddup already.


Oh, I did sit down with a local publisher here in North Bend to discover what it might cost to publish and print 50 or 100 or 150 paperback copies of a book...a book of poetry.  A book that nobody ever asked me to write. 


I sifted through those hundreds and hundreds of poems, separating the wheat from the chaff. I arranged them into a format that I imagined might be intelligible to someone besides myself. I even wrote a foreword trying to explain the process. It begins like this:


“Congratulations. If you’re reading this, then I am likely dead, and you’re not. Kudos.”


It’s all pretty much downhill from there. 


And so I’m waiting to hear back from the publisher. I’ve set aside a few bucks for that project. We’ll see what happens. I have a few trusted friends whom I have designated as the caretakers of such a tome, should it ever come into being. 


I’ll keep you posted.  (You know I will). Just lately it seems that I have plenty of time on my hands.






Submitted: November 14, 2020

© Copyright 2021 ShadyBrady. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:



This is something I've found myself thinking a lot about lately - what's the point in it all. Writing, I mean. Good luck with the publisher but beware of someone that wants you to pay for the privilege.

Sun, November 15th, 2020 8:37pm


It’s a checkmark on my bucket list. I write because that’s what I do, or at least it’s my only hobby. I appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts on the matter. Booksie is the closest thing I have to a literary friend. I welcome the observations and criticisms of folks like myself who enjoy word craft.

Sun, November 15th, 2020 1:59pm

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