So says Robert Frost. I personally think Robert Frost is one of the finest writers I have ever read, and I have read some, even if I say so myself. Since I have been on my blogging trip, I like to look up what other writers: bloggers and the traditional writers, have to say about their craft. I was looking for inspiration and this is what I found today: “No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader.” – Robert Frost.
It resonates with me totally. It also made me realize I have been doing some things wrong when it comes to writing. As an individual, I can be embarrassingly sentimental, not only to those around me but also to myself. And this image of me does not really match the image people have of me when they interact with me on a personal or professional level. To most people, I am practical, level-headed and while I can get upset at times, they would definitely not call me sentimental.
But the fact is I am – terribly sentimental. I can look at a painting and cry, I can read poetry and cry; you get the gist. There are times when I am writing a story or piece and I will stop and weep. This happens as a lot of my stories are based on real people I may have seen, interacted with or read about. For me, the story or the poem becomes an opportunity to discover the person and all that has happened to him or her through the journeys of my imagination. If I am aware of a tragedy that may have affected the person, it upsets me and brings tears to my eyes. I have scrapped several stories and poems that made me feel this way because I thought it was soppy. And I always felt no one would want to read soppy stories!
And then, today, I came across this quote, ‘No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader…’ This makes you wonder how people will respond to a story that makes you cry while writing. Would it move the reader to tears?
This quote gives you the courage to try and be honest, to share your feelings with your readers, and to write without worrying about being soppy. So, thank you, Mr. Frost.
~ Bharti Athray