The greatest art in the world is the art of storytelling. ~ Cecil B. DeMille
When I encourage people to write down their stories the usual replies are:
- My life is nothing special
- I haven’t done anything worth writing about
- No one would be interested, who would read them?
In 1874 a young man kept a day planner. In it he recorded the weather and something he did that day, like picking cotton, going to the cotton gin, or sitting up with a sick friend. He wrote about going to church or eating supper with family. If someone had told him his scribblings would one day be treasured, he would have thought that person was nuts. When 1875 rolled around, he threw his the 1874 planner in the drawer. Over the years the little planner was passed on until it landed in the hands of his great-granddaughter in 2010. She opened it and ran her finger over his writing while reverently reading what he had to say. This was her touching point, her connection, with a long-dead relative. To her, it wasn’t day-to-day ramblings. It was a treasure.
That great-granddaughter is me.
Writer Page Lambert once said, “We cannot change the pain of our past, but we can give health to the future.” We can do this through writing. The difference between what my great-grandfather did and what I do is writing with purpose. Writing to give health to the future. And good news! You don’t have to be a writer to do this. Just tell your stories.
- Mistakes you made, what you learned from them, and how you overcame.
- Influential people in your life, why they are influential, how they have inspired you
- Your observations and epiphanies from the historic events that have taken place in your lifetime. Things that have changed or influenced the way we live in the USA, or even the world. Natural disasters, the social media explosion, or modern inventions.
- Memories made or lessons that can be taken from your hobbies.
You may not think anyone will be interested. But from experience let me say, yes, your stories will be treasured. They are threads in the fabric of humanity.
Your stories matter.