Writing to writers raises a level of self-consciousness less present for other readers. It particularly raises the question: Who am I writing for? Are you reading this blog, and does it gain your curiosity? There’s no point in writing if you simply read it out of duty, or give up in disinterest
Most advice to writers is to research a probable audience, although researching a group as varied as other writers could be challenging. At first glance, it would seem that correct, creative and engaging material would be the first imperative. That I try to do.
But even granted that, I’m still not sure what content will capture your attention. Some suggest sharing challenges, as most of us share common difficulties and probably identify with them. But I’m not sure I want to parade my impairments and deficiencies before you, I don’t wear my heart on my sleeve easily. And besides, you probably have enough challenges of your own.
I could boast about my success as a writer, but that would give me an arrogant reputation that I seek to avoid—even if I am that. But really, I don’t have much success to write about. Besides, I find listening to a procession of others’ victories mostly makes me feel inadequate.
Of course, hints and tips are invaluable, and I glean much help from ideas and websites, but as a relatively new writer, I have little to offer beyond common knowledge and experience.
All this leaves me with a blank page, except it seems to be filling up already. Amazing how much space just musing takes up.
This leads to a final idea. Perhaps I should be writing to myself. That sounds introverted and selfish I know, but I find writing to order, instead of what I feel like writing, diffuses inspiration and develops mechanical writing. I don’t want to bore you.
I‘m not alone in that idea. Our widely accepted authority, Strunk and White, suggests we should be concerned for the reader’s plight, but not his wants: “Your whole duty as a writer is to please and satisfy yourself.” Passion will more likely gain an audience anyway, as it arises from deeply held beliefs and values that Christian writers share.
However, I’m sure of one thing: I cannot be sure of my own ideas. Frequently, I find God’s perspective on things quite different to mine. That drives me to pray for His wisdom to guide my thoughts when writing. That is first priority.
And I guess that also answers the dilemma: I need His guidance on what to write in the first place. And, of course—how did I miss it?—I write for Him; He is the first and final reader.