Why is writing important?

I’ll be the first to admit – I’ve never been a particularly strong writer. My writing skills are perhaps a bit better when it comes to conference papers and technical reports, but let’s be real, who, besides for experts in one’s particular area, can read and truly understand the content of a technical article? Although it’s usually easy for me to think of things to write about, I often have difficulty putting my thoughts to paper. Update: this simple 4-paragraph post, for example, took me over an hour to write…

Let me start from the beginning. Since my elementary school days, I’ve had many friends who can effortlessly write a long blog post or persuasive essay. Their thoughts flow through to a piece of paper like water flows on a smooth object (no, I am not a master of similes). Frankly (but I am a master of puns), I’ve never been one of them. During middle school and high school, I often had trouble producing high-quality work in my humanities classes. This led to copious amounts of frustration, and I often stayed up late staring at my half-complete essays without knowing how to proceed. I’d like to believe that that I became better writer in college, but the so-called “fuzzy” classes were almost always the ones that I underperformed in.

I’m now 21 years old, and I believe that, at this juncture in my life, one of my key resolves should be to become a better writer. Writing, and communication in general, is one of the most important aspects of one’s job, regardless of profession. It comes in handy when writing evaluations, speaking with managers and peers, and composing simple emails. Think about it: you and I communicate with others on a daily basis, either through spoken words or by putting a figurative pen to the paper. Either way, we are expressing our ideas and thoughts.  My hope is that, by writing and posting my so-called “musings” online, I can hopefully gain some (nonzero) number of readers while simultaneously increasing my writing abilities in a meaningful way.

Q: “Okay, Frank, that’s great. So you just plan on blindly writing short posts on a semi-regular basis… to improve your writing skills? What?”

A: Yes, but that’s only part of it. Practice makes perfect! As I post these writings more and more, my hope is that I slowly become a better writer. But, in addition, I hope that these writings can serve as something of a self-reflection. Sometimes, when I type my thoughts into a text editor, it allows me to contemplate my work or opinions in a clearer manner. In a sense, I hope that these writings can help me become a better and more complete person for the future as well.