“The voices, Anne. The voices. I can’t stop them. They come to me. When I sleep, when I wake, when I sup, when I walk down the hall. The sweet longings of a maiden, the surging ambitions of a courtier, the foul designs of a murderer, the wretched pleas of his victims, only when I put their words, their voices, to parchment, are they cast loose, freed. Only then is my mind quieted. At peace. I would go mad if I did not write down the voices.”
-Earl of Oxford, Anonymous.
My mother and I watched this movie a few weeks ago, and this quote came to mind earlier when I was talking to a friend. This quote, with far greater eloquence of tongue than I, perfectly explains why a writer must write. And I couldn’t help but share. For me, I can say this is not the only reason I write. I started writing for two reasons, the first was that by writing poetry, I could take the fiendish emotions raging inside me and put them down on a page, in an organized and elegant manner, so that I could find the source of my anxiety and deal with it calmly. The second is that by creating fictional scenarios that most would count as impossible (both physically and mentally) to deal with, then placing myself in them by writing from my character’s point of view, I can come back from writing and be far more grateful for my real life circumstances. It’s an amazing gift from God, and I’ll never cease to be grateful for it. But, once I started, this quote became quite the reality for me. Once you’ve joined the world of fiction writers, you never look back. The worlds you form and the characters you create, become a part of you forever. Their whispers will come to you, waking and sleeping, for the rest of your life. What do you think, fellow scribes? What is it that drives you to write?