A Writer is an Intellectual Nudist, So To Speak

I once read a quote by Paulo Coelho: “Writing is the acceptable form of public nudism”. I can’t remember exactly but that’s the core message more or less. Wait a  minute , how dare he say such a thing? Is he trying to call himself a male stripper or what? Haha… That could be an interesting imagination.  Yet really, what sets a writer apart from from a stripper?

I know the idea is too gross to think about. I am furthermore the most bashful  person I have ever known. I hardly made friends  in my neighborhood from my early childhood. Parents always requested me to go out more and to spend less time at home. But I couldn’t , simply couldn’t. Socializing isn’t my thing, as far as I know. I’m very picky when it comes to befriending. Things got more complicated when I realized they were not the people I could comfortably share my thoughts with.

So I thought being a writer would be a perfect job to pick when I grew up someday. I was wrong. I did once think writing meant I don’t have to pay attention to people around me. Writers can spend their whole lifetime sitting in a favorite nook of their choice without anyone interrupting.

Yet as time passed by, I slowly but surely came to a contradictory conclusion. A finding that challenged my flowery ideal. Being a writer entails a lot of social aspects as well, I supposed. How so? Because writers cannot literally work in a complete isolation. They have to immerse themselves too in this raging sea of life. They might be a great storyteller but the stories will be more alive and real in any possible way if writers tell them after experiencing or observing first handedly.

And talking about writers as intellectual nudists, I found that writers should, or must even, never feel embarrassed about any of their writeups or drafts or story ideas. Whatever they come up with after creative processes. They just simply feel no embarrassment on inhibition when it comes to telling them to other people. To the rest of the world.

While I was studying literature back then, I was told that works of literature are reflection of the authors’ complexity of personality, life, thoughts, emotions, everything. In prose analysis, we sometimes scrutinized works based on the authors’ biography. I am convinced then prior to becoming a writer, one should be aware of the consequences: being disseminated alive like a helpless tiny frog by a curious student in a lab. But this time they do it by means of our works. Each word in our literary works or any piece of writing may be the best clue to the deepest secret of ours. And writers just let the clues out.

Thus, the inhibition seems to hold me back. On one hand, I want people know that I have something to tell. Something that I think
is useful for them, meaningful for others, or enjoyable. I want them to know I am a man of value. But on the other hand, I get intimidated every time I have to think of the possibilities that people or readers may know and find my ‘flaws’ and later make use of that as a mockery. Sounds cowardish? Maybe I am.

So I am asking myself now whether I will completely plunge and dive with head first into the pool full of sharks into the world of author or…?

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