Jennifer Soldner INFJ
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Writing From the Soul: A Practice Nearing Extinction

Since before words, man has been writing as a primary form of self-expression. Painted images on cave walls and chiseled pictures into stone, artwork has filled our primitive history. As languages developed, so did our methods of art. While pictures still grace our society, words are also used as self-expressive art flowing across the canvases.

Authors for centuries have been writing fiction and non-fiction, poetry and prose, novels and novellas. Fueling their passionate words that echo through time is the expressions of their soul. They wrote what they felt, what they believed, what they lived.

As our culture continues to evolve, the expressive art of man's words slowly, and sadly, evolves with it. What once was fueled by the soul is now hidden in fear. The fast click of a publish button now overtakes the months and years of grueling efforts to reach the public and with that one simple click, the soul becomes exposed.

Sharing personal experiences and thoughts turns into an internet battle zone. A statement as simple as what you are eating for dinner becomes a full-on attack of calorie intake, animal rights and farming politics. Parenting choices, television preferences and style of clothing are fields riddled with arsenals, wreaking havoc on the most sensitive among us.

These sensitives, these deep souls, are the ones who long so much to share what is within them. They want to sit down and write it all out, sharing their innermost thoughts on life, the universe and everything. The longing burns like fire within them to reach out to man through our most primitive artwork, the art of visible self-expression.

But with the yearning, they cease dead in their tracks. They fear the publish button. Their words never reach a soul but remain captive and enslaved by terror within a simple box sat upon a desktop. The harsh words and critiques about the latest fads have them crippled in fear by sharing anything that matters.

The trivial pieces of existence are trampled and mangled by the instantaneous ability to achieve information, so why would they release what matters most to them? Why would they express the deepest pieces of their soul, exposing themselves like an open wound to the sharks?

A true shame through the evolution of man. The most sensitive, the most precious, the most enlightened among us silenced by the brute of those who fear depth, change or difference. The primitive art of expressing the self, expressing the soul, slowly smothering.

The extinction of self. The extinction of souls. This is our future. This is our reality.


  1. True: sensitive, insightful writing often takes time... months, even years... to fully percolate through the mental chatter and penetrate the soul of the reader. Especially of poets, but also of writing in any other format. I blame the deliberately sped-up pace of so-called "Developed Countries", particularly the U.S.A. but also perceptible elsewhere; we're taught almost from birth that we don't have TIME to "waste" on stuff that doesn't give immediate, perceptible and material results. Nevertheless, there remains a market for "this stuff", meaning writing that has soul.
    My only suggestion is for each of us to do what we can to nurture any of these sensitives we may encounter. As any topiarist will tell you, it can take years of patient growth and development before a shrub can be trimmed into a desired shape. Writers must learn to recognize this within themselves while recognizing the need for painful cuts or edits or even complete re-writes when necessary.
    Learning when it actually is necessary and accepting that can be the last barrier between a writer and their goal of getting published.

  2. It's so easy to break a writer's ability to write, and it's being done with abandon these days. Well said, great blog post!

  3. Although I've written and done artwork my entire life, I'm on the precipitous edge of submitting my first 'real' book for formal critiquing...scared stiff about what criticisms WILL come my way. I'll brace myself for sure. And I'll live and be a better writer for it, maybe even published one day.

    It IS an absolute daunting feeling in this day and age of anonymous masks that allow so many unqualified armchair critics to brutally cut down anyone still in the learning stages. I don't fault any new author for giving up. I hope that they develop the hard shell that'll be required of them, and push on. If they feel that soulful passion, they should fight for the reward, hard as it will be. Something tells me, it'll be worth it.

    Your article has inspired me to just brace myself that much more, and keep on keeping on. Thank you for that.


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