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Passions in Poetry

Writers Self Involved?

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Member Rara Avis
since 06-15-99
Posts 7276
Mobile, AL

0 posted 04-07-2001 05:14 PM       View Profile for Temptress   Email Temptress   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Temptress

I was talking to my sister in law the other day. Just in passing discussing getting published, writing, and other stuff. Somehow the conversation took a weird turn when she told me that writers were weird...self involved. While I started to argue with her, I couldn't because I began to wonder if this weren't true. Are we, as writers, too self involved in ourselves or our craft? And how can we be self involved if we write about a range of different things, people, emotions, etc.  Are we as in touch with the world and other people (besides other writers) as we think we are? The moment she said that, something rebelled within me but also wondered also.  I'm not complaining. I've resolved that I could make writing my sole obsession and be content for the rest of my life.  For some amount of time, I would love to seclude myself from every luxury and convenience this world today has to offer and then write of the experience.  Is this something close to what Thoreau writes of or am I completely off on even my little bit of knowledge on him? Anyway, it sounds like a good idea, but would shutting myself off from everyone save for but little contact make me self involved? Of course I would write more than about myself. There are beauties to be explored that no one has explored for a very long time since the writers of well..I'll have to say "older days". Soo..maybe I'm rambling here, but the whole thing has me obsessing. I don't know if this belongs in Philosophy or not, but hey..I'm terrified of that place anyways, so I put it here. What do you all think?
I guess I got a complex out of the whole thing because she said that, and she knows that I write, so I wonder was she saying that I was self involved too...or was she dismissing the fact that I am a writer...or if thats her idea of how a writer acts, then maybe she doesn't really think I'm a writer? ROTFL! Geesh..sorry..this last part is just my lil complex making a show. Sometimes we question enough, and sometimes we don't question enough.

still d-i-s-c-o-n-n-e-c-t-e-d
I am bound by this, you become Night's sole mistress, and I am jealous in my endeavours for his attention.

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1 posted 04-07-2001 07:46 PM       View Profile for Saxoness   Email Saxoness   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Saxoness

I think probably that self involved is the wrong word.  I do, however, believe that writers tend to lean towards introvertedness and introspection quite a bit, although of course this isn't true for everyone.  On a side note, I read an article a few weeks ago that claimed writers compared to the rest of the population are twice as likely to be emotionally unstable or unballanced, and poets at the top of that list.  Thats it, we need to start a weekly chat support group lol.  Stay sane ya'll  

"Glory remains unaware of my neglected dwelling where alone
I sing my tearful song which has charms only for me."

Irish Rose
Member Patricius
since 04-06-2000
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2 posted 04-07-2001 09:09 PM       View Profile for Irish Rose   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Irish Rose

Let me approach this from my own personal viewpoint, if I may.  I didn't write anything for nearly 35 years.  Now, I can't stop.  During that time I listened, I gathered emotions but did not release them, I was the opposite of self-involved but yes, I can see how writing can lead to self-involvement.  To me, writing is being released from prison.  I mean that with all of my heart.  To view the world, take it in, soak it up for over 35 years really and then explode with writiing is an honor and a gift I am blessed to have found.

I too, would like nothing more than to seclude myself and write and really that's what I do.  I have a great deal of time alone in the evening and I have a small home office iwth of course, the computer and I - write.  But before I do, I draw on the time I did not write and what and how I felt and I remember.  

I read somewhere that poetry is the language of the conscious.  Our conscious minds?  Sure, but I believe it can also be the unconscious.  Have you ever written about a dream?   Boy I have.  Let me say, it is amazing to be able to read your own words back to yourself and say after a few weeks or months "did I write that?"
because well, either it's horrid or it's so wonderful you want to pat yourself on the back.

Reading others helps me not become self-involved as I sure don't want to be.

Thank you for this interesting thread, it made me think.  

dreamer1 12 5 24
since 12-11-2000
Posts 172
crossing between

3 posted 04-07-2001 09:30 PM       View Profile for dreamer1 12 5 24   Email dreamer1 12 5 24   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for dreamer1 12 5 24

I don't know about everyone, but I tend to enjoy being alone, or just watching people. I think, or I watch, then I write. I suppose I am probably one of the only people in my school who enjoys being alone, but thinking is something that is important to me to do. (Excuse my poor grammer, I'm tired). Anyway, I don't know if this is what you were asking, but this is what I wrote, so... (Shut up before you say something really dumb Stacey!). (Good idea). (That was dumb).


....peace as a primary objective is dangerous because it implies that we would sacrifice any principle for the sake of it....
Robert Kaplan

since 07-30-2000
Posts 201
Georgia, USA

4 posted 04-07-2001 10:04 PM       View Profile for Red-uni   Email Red-uni   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Red-uni's Home Page   View IP for Red-uni

For me writing is a release,I am not good at it yet, but am getting better.  My goal to be published.  Why?  I don't know, I love to write and want others to share what I write and maybe...just maybe, touch someone's life. I am not working and can write whenever I wish, I love it!!!  I have never been able to do this; it's really neat.  I am messing up on my punctuation, I think.  hehee...said I am getting better, not there yet.  I feel I am more of a loner at times, I do have friends, and go places.  I am learning to be observant during the day to look around and see what I may want to write about.  I feel writing is personal.  Everyone to an extent has their own reasons, whether a release, to share, to teach, or whatever.  I think though for me this means I do have to be alone at times.  )  If that is self-involved so be it.
I enjoyed your piece, made me think.
Just A Woman
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since 03-10-2001
Posts 508

5 posted 04-07-2001 10:04 PM       View Profile for Just A Woman   Email Just A Woman   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Just A Woman

Gosh, I don't think I would have taken that comment very nicely.  In fact, I know I wouldn't have!  
I don't think writers are any more self involved than other people.  I know that I can sometimes be more self involved but I don't think it has anything to do with the fact that I'm a writer.  
Writers are different, thank God for that.  But self involved?  Naaaaaa, I don't think so.  Good question, Jennifer!

"I can't remember if I'm the good twin or the evil one."

Dopey Dope
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6 posted 04-08-2001 12:01 AM       View Profile for Dopey Dope   Email Dopey Dope   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Dopey Dope

Personally I think that writers aren't any more self involved than any other person. I think we just delve within our thoughts more and actually PUT THEM ON PAPER. We take that extra effort. Of course we write about more than just ourselves and our own experiences! We're kind, dark, erotic, sad, happy, in love, in rage, and most of all....we're human.

Poet deVine
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since 05-26-99
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Hurricane Alley

7 posted 04-08-2001 12:16 AM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

I agree with my smart friend Dopey!!!    
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Member Rara Avis
since 01-03-2000
Posts 8382

8 posted 12-20-2002 03:12 PM       View Profile for bsquirrel   Email bsquirrel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for bsquirrel

Writing is self-involved, and a lonely exercise. But one of beauty.

Self-involved and vanity are two different things. You can be (and many are) self-loathing, and still be a writer.

Writing's all about taking the stimuli of the world and filtering it through YOUR experience, or what YOU think others experiences are.

Nothing screams SELF louder.

Member Elite
since 01-06-2000
Posts 3135
... the old black rum

9 posted 12-20-2002 04:01 PM       View Profile for Parker   Email Parker   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Parker's Home Page   View IP for Parker

I wonder if anyone can really be a great and original writer by shutting themself off from the world. What would you be writing about... other peoples experiences, rehashing other written materials?
Doesn't one have to experience life to truly understand and truly write about it. If all we have is media feeds won't that skew our writing to lean more in the direction of media's viewpoint. Supporting the popular and short lived clicks and such. Where would our originality come from??? other people's.

One should explore life, experience the world, and dive into it freely and feed our senses. I believe to be a great writer we need to be worldly involved, otherwise were looking from a little window behind a dusty old door....

If I could only get that damn door open to escape.

Senior Member
since 05-27-2001
Posts 1693
Ohio, USA

10 posted 12-20-2002 08:37 PM       View Profile for hush   Email hush   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for hush

Everyone's self-involved. My boyfriend reads comics. You know what he talks to me about? Comics, how he feels about them, and every now and then, how they relate to his own life.

My best friend's youngest brother plays football. And he also watches a lot of football, and talks about football alot.

Her other brother plays guitar. When he's not playing guitar, he's talking about the guitar players on the radio.

I think when people have any interest, they're very self-involved about it. It's probably just easier to call self-involvement when it's an artist or writer whose point of interest lies in something they, themselves, do.
Member Rara Avis
since 11-18-2002
Posts 7451
the ass-end of space

11 posted 12-21-2002 04:17 AM       View Profile for Aenimal   Email Aenimal   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Aenimal

I think we are to some degree.. I even wrote had a thread a few days back where I asked if i really had talent writing or was it that I had a talent for reflection and whining in poetic form.
Member Caelestus
since 06-25-99
Posts 67715
Listening to every heart

12 posted 12-21-2002 08:23 AM       View Profile for Sunshine   Email Sunshine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Sunshine's Home Page   View IP for Sunshine

Surprising how timely things are when they pop up from the past...

Writing appears "mysterious" to some.  Here we are, scratching down or clicking into a machine thoughts that we are not ready to share when interrupted...we become a little defensive because "it's not DONE yet..." and we get more than a little irritated when our thought processes are interfered with...and sometimes, we verbally "bite" those who bring the interruption.

As was pointed out above, we are no less, nor more different than anyone else with an obsession.  Writing is quieter than guitar playing.  If I were playing a guitar as opposed to writing, no one would come up and say "what'cha doing?"  It's quite obvious.

But writing is so many things.  It could be scribbles, a grocery list, a list of things to do.  It could be the beginning of a poem that could set the world on edge, or the beginning fantasies of a book in birth.

Are writers obsessive?  No more, I would say, than anyone who takes a profession and makes it their own.  You could apply that to any one who takes on a job, and makes it theirs.  It's called pride of workmanship.  

As luck would have it, writers do tend, from what I have seen, to be more introspective, as well as, perhaps, a bit more introverted.  Then because people think we seem to have something to share [whether we are ready to share, or not...] we're asked to talk about what we're writing about.  That's not as easily done as one would expect.  The ideas we are trying to write down haven't been fully disseminated just yet...they are still in the process of coming together in our own mind.  For myself, that's when I get tongue-tied, and it is quite easy for someone to come in and make me feel quite foolish for even thinking that I had something to say.

And from the length of this little ditty...who knows if I have said anything worthwhile or not?  

[This message has been edited by Sunshine (12-21-2002 09:16 AM).]

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13 posted 12-21-2002 12:37 PM       View Profile for Midnitesun   Email Midnitesun   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Midnitesun

Always. But that doesn't mean we aren't also others-involved. I think it's only natural to focus on self, as it's always from our unique POV that we begin to experience what others have to share.
Without self, there is no other.
Member Rara Avis
since 07-17-99
Posts 8273

14 posted 12-22-2002 06:05 PM       View Profile for Severn   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Severn

From recent experience - my god yes.


Nuke us the arctic...blow us up...the world might be a better place.

(yes, yes for those who start to panic - this is a gross exaggeration)


[This message has been edited by Severn (12-22-2002 06:20 PM).]

brian madden
Member Elite
since 05-06-2000
Posts 4532

15 posted 12-22-2002 06:54 PM       View Profile for brian madden   Email brian madden   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for brian madden

I agree with Kamla

"Nuke them from space.. it's the only way to be sure"


watched from the wings as the scenes were replayed we saw ourselves now as we never have seen" ian curtis

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Member Ascendant
since 12-27-2000
Posts 5766

16 posted 12-29-2002 08:34 PM       View Profile for Skyfire   Email Skyfire   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Skyfire

I'm self-involved. I freely admit it, but if I'm not, then who's going to be involved in me?

I'm dangerous when left alone hehehe
*sniff* I've never been abducted by aliens...
I admit it... I like thinking about guys

brian madden
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since 05-06-2000
Posts 4532

17 posted 12-31-2002 03:13 PM       View Profile for brian madden   Email brian madden   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for brian madden

Self involved? completely, but isn't that a good thing.... A writer needs to have the convince that what he/she sees is important enough to write about and share with others.

As has been mentioned writing is a solitary act, the writer spends alot of time observing and working alone but then shares his/her work with the masses.

Writer's can be completely self involved, they can use the dramas and emotions of others as sources of inspiration, they can rewrite their lives and relationships altering details. I always think of Donal Davoren in Sean O Casey's play, "shadow of a gun man" the perfect example of a truly self involved poet, and try my best to be the exact opposite but i can't help but relate to the character. Maybe all writer's are self involved, maybe its the nature of the beast, but i don't care i am too self involved.



watched from the wings as the scenes were replayed we saw ourselves now as we never have seen" ian curtis

[This message has been edited by brian madden (12-31-2002 03:30 PM).]

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