By Rhett Davenport
Power of the Pen that Packs a Punch!
Every day we experience the whirlwind of words that make up our language. Our desire to communicate with each other is powerful. Each culture has a unique way of communicating among themselves using hallmark phrases that have completely different meaning than what the words suggest. So how do you communicate with the readers of your article in a way that brings together people from diverse cultures and personal backgrounds?
Each of us have a unique story to tell that we have learned from our experiences.
Growing up I knew that my writing was not as powerful as I wanted it to be. I had so much I wanted to share and I could feel the power of the message I was trying to get across, but the war I had with bringing my words into submission with the power I wanted to express was a major fight. I would share my experiences with others and try to explain the emotions I felt.
The older I got, the more I hated reading my own writing. Grammatically, my writing was sound, but the feelings that I wanted to express in my writing was having the opposite effect of what I was desiring. I would turn in my writing assignments to my teachers and because it was grammatically sound, I would get a good grade.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t the grade I wanted, having a desire to excel and change the world.
My writing brought the same feelings to the reader that detracted me from it. The feedback I got was lame and never answered the question that I was seeking. How do I make my words a powerful experience? I found, after years of looking, the answer that escaped me for so long.
After writing an article that had the same lameness as my previous writings, a friend told me, “Your writing is good, but you get caught up in your story”. My friend then explained that my desire to express my experiences was bringing up the very emotions I felt when I was going through the experience, as if I was reliving them, thereby forcing the reader to live the unpleasantness with me. The excruciating emotions that were swirling around me came out in my writing.
What a revelation! The phrase “let your words speak for themselves” came to mind. I didn’t have to explain myself or my emotions. I discovered I could let my experience create an experience for the person reading it. Our words have an underlying message that shout out different emotions at the reader which creates the experience for the reader. Words are powerful and trying to compensate power for what already has power is counterproductive. Having experienced a time in my life where emotions clashed I now see how so often we create the same clash with our writing. All that unpleasantness that I felt with clashing emotions came in my writing because the power of the words I used were clashing with the emotion I was trying to portray.
A powerful article uses the power of the words to create an experience that takes the reader into a different dimension. Imagine being taken into a different reality where everything you thought you knew appeared differently. Would your perspective change? That is the goal of a powerful article. You are providing an experience for the reader in which their perspective can be changed. Getting caught up in your own story destroys the possibility of such an experience.
It is so easy to get sucked into a story that is familiar. The reader doesn’t want familiar. They want a new experience. They want the whirlwind of words that they experience every day to take them somewhere new and exciting, allowing them to experience your writing with their own emotions. As writers, let us help them get that experience by getting out of our story and creating an opportunity for them to experience their own story through our words.