Writing is a wonderful, yet solitary art. Unlike ballet, opera, or any other performance-based art, you don’t need to train with others to hone your craft. In fact, one tends to learn more through reading established authors such as Ernest Hemingway, Isabel Allende, Stephenie Meyer, and so on. And, unless you want feedback, or planning on becoming the next J.K Rowling, you can write your entire life without having a single human being read your work. While all of this is true, none of it means that writing is not meant to be performed.
When our department began preparing for our first Creative Writing Show of the year I came to understand why writing is a performance-based art in its own right. At the time, the reality of having to read my work in front of an audience terrified me. I felt that my work would not be understood by the audience or worse yet, writers in my own department. I was wrong. We came together as a department, searched each other’s work for deeper meaning, and broke down walls of fear. During this time I was connected to everyone and understood why writing should be performed.
Writers are storytellers, whether it be through poetry, fiction, or playwriting. As storytellers, writers have the ability to create familiar experiences, bring joy to experiences that are unfamiliar, and help connect people to each other through their words. When my name was called and I stepped onto the stage, I was connected to my story, my vision, and my passion. My passion, in turn, brought life to my performance and gave life to my audience and connected everyone to each other.
Harmony Wicker, class of 2018