Simply an Exercise

A person’s head can be full of inner voices as a writer. There may be characters, scenarios, and expressions jumbled on top of a personal to do list, grocery list, and the conversation you happen to be having at any particular moment.

Of course, there are the worries and self-doubt too. Maybe even nagging criticisms (from yourself and others). Let me remind you of a beautiful, beautiful expression, “Simply an exercise.”

You may gloss over it, hoping I get to a tip–something I plan to share with my next post–but say it to yourself. Roll the concept over in your mind.

You may want to get published more than anything in the world. You may want your gift of writing to gain long overdue respect and appreciation. You  may be hanging a lot of hope on your dream while experiencing a lot of vague unease or abject terror about writers’ block and statistics, but . . .

It’s ok to write simply an exercise. It is ok to play with words, in particular because through that play one often develops exactly what ought to be developed: an appreciation of words, toned usage, strength of literary forms, experience, and endurance. It can be fun and you may shed a few pounds of inner paralysis along the way.

All sorts of writing can be an exercise. And, as we write better, smarter, more full of style and experience, our thinking can become honed too. Our conversations can grow in effectiveness. Our communication can become more flexible with layers of literary forms and approaches.

Exercises are “write and salutary!” Ok, so writing is not the same “meet, right, and salutary” as we pray in the liturgy, but there really is “write and salutary”!Writing really can, and does, often have a positive impact on our vocations, as well as on ourselves. Thanks be to God.

So let’s get to it! Even if your mind is just playing around without a scrap of paper in sight: wordplay counts!

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