Special Note: I’ve been fortunate to have a lot of teachers in my life. Some of these people probably don’t even realize I was their pupil at one point or another. I’d like to dedicate this blog post to a friend who greeted me in the hallowed halls of the Zoetrope writers workshop at the true beginning of my writing career. Her example and kind words of encouragement have helped many a writer over the years, whether it was as an editor or reviewer or friend. Happy birthday, Beverly!
Mahatma Gandhi said, “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” I think writers have another obligation. Write the change. It’s the charge given to each of us with this calling to write our feelings and dreams down and send them out on paper airplanes into the world.
Don’t like the world with less opportunity for lower classes? Imagine it different. Write the change.
Don’t like racism? Write a world with more tolerance.
Don’t like partisan politics? Erase them with a few strokes of the keyboard—in your writing, anyway.
Horrified by the attitudes that resulted in the #metoo movement? Write a world where consent is actually romanticized. For instance:
She loved and trusted this man. Nothing they chose to do together could be wrong or destructive. —Dickens Magic, coming October 31, 2018
I’m not saying you’ll change the world with your stories. I’m saying it’s up to the writers and dreamers to reach out to others and show them what the world could be. Imagine a world where the rights of every human being are respected. Imagine a world where technology aids instead of replaces human interaction. Imagine a world where everyone is valued for what they bring to the world, no matter what their skill is.
Imagine it and write it.