Why I Started Writing

One of my all time favourite YouTubers is Dottie James - if you haven't heard of her then I truly recommend you look her up. Instead of the conventional vlogs or challenge videos, Dottie produces beautiful videos of her spoken word poetry - an ultimate guilty pleasure of mine. This morning I stumbled across her most recent video titled 'Why I Started Writing' (you can find it here), and it sparked an idea for what I was going to write about today. Whilst her video vocalises her reasons in a beautifully poetic manner, I know that it wouldn't be as successful if I attempted to replicate that - so, my deepest apologies, I guess I shall stick to my boringly literal drivel. 

So, I guess I shall start from the beginning. For as long as I can remember, I've always had an interest in books. My parents always encouraged us to read, and a bedtime story at night was my favourite part of the day. Although I have vivid memories of the bed being cramped, and of us all arguing over who got to sit the closest to mum - I truly did enjoy it. I loved how words could string together in a sentence and form an instantaneous image in my head - how I could close my eyes when listening to my mum read and picture exactly what she was talking about. 

Creativity has always been a massive part of my life - and my imagination has always been a force to be reckoned with. For most of my childhood I had an utter infatuation with fairies, with most of the books on my bookshelf being coherent of this subject matter. I adored how something fictional (a fact I have only recently come to terms with) could be made to feel so real - making me truly believe that the trees at the bottom of my garden were inhibited with these beautiful mythical creatures. Whilst the illustrations in the books were always stunning, my main focus was always on the words. The intricate details being described, enough to make my wildest dreams inherent a sense of reality. 

As I got older, creative / personal writing became more encouraged in English lessons, and I began to gain a real sense of enjoyment for it. Whilst school has never been something I can. hand on heart. say I enjoy, it was in my English lessons where I finally found a sense of sanctuary - where I could express my thoughts, desires and opinions in my own personal way. As I've mentioned before, science and maths were subjects I completely and utterly struggled with - I guess my mind just isn't programmed in that way, and as I developed a clear interest for English, I began to realise that that was okay. 

I will always remember when we moved on to studying poetry. If I hadn't realised I loved the subject before, I definitely knew I did now. W. H. Auden's 'Stop All The Clocks' is the first poem I remember being introduced to, and even to this day I get chills when I read it. I loved how words could be used to imply exterior meanings, as opposed to the literal denotations that are attached to them. How the stars could be used as a metaphor, how anthropomorphism existed heavily within works of literature. So, when the teacher set us the task of writing our own poems - I took it, and I ran with it; returning in on Monday morning armed with the longest poem I believe has ever existed. Heavily inspired by 'Stop All The Clocks' and a One Direction song ('Moments' - if you know, you know) my page became flooded with words I had no prior knowledge existed inside of me. I still remember the first two stanzas of that poem, yet seem to have lost the original copy (:(). 

Shut the door,
Turn off the lights,
My world is in darkness,
My days are now nights

Why does everyone seem to think
They have suffered as much as me
They have not felt this pain inside my heart
I am in such agony

If I'm perfectly honest, this poem haunts me. I wrote about losing someone close to me before I had even realised that this would later become the case - like all works of literature, I was heavily foreshadowing. Yet, I wasn't foreshadowing the lives of the characters included in my poem, I was foreshadowing my own. 

Like all teenagers, I began to keep a diary - something that I believe helped me through some extremely difficult points. I have this irrational fear of opening up to people, so instead of turning to a friend or family member, I began to turn to my pen and notebook. On nights where the concept of sleep was utterly non-existent, I would sit in bed and just write down every single thing that was on my mind. Whilst the paper couldn't give me a hug and tell me that everything was going to turn out okay, I got such a heavy sense of comfort from it. I was expressing myself, and everything that was going on, yet I was still keeping it extremely private - and this worked well. If I was to give one piece of advice to anyone who is currently struggling, I would tell them to keep a diary. Not only for you to turn to when you're lost, confused, angry, upset or hurt - but also for all the feelings in between. There are moments when I've stumbled across old diary entries, and felt an overwhelming sense of pride - I would write about times when I thought nothing was going to get better - and, I am living proof that it did. 

Then, came the beginning of my blog. I started it in the Summer after GCSE's, where I would write a post about every place that I had visited - perhaps posting once every month or something along those lines. This mainly was created because it was at this point I realised I wanted to be a Journalist, and I knew that this would be a good thing to include in my personal statement. After the Summer, I neglected my blog for a bit - only posting whenever I had the time or energy to do so. Whilst it was something I truly enjoyed, it took a back seat for a while as I began to struggle massively at school and knew that all focus needed to be paid towards my studies. 

However, then things started to go downhill - and I'm not going to go into details, but I'm sure many of you will be aware of what I am referring to here. I began to become extremely fearful of my own words - not wanting to put pen to paper, because I didn't want to come to terms with what would come out. I didn't want to know how I truly felt. Anything that I did write in this time was private, I don't think I'll ever be comfortable showcasing it to the world. Yet, I knew that this wouldn't be the end of my writing forever. I made a promise to someone I love with every part of me to never give up, and whilst it took a long while for me to stick to my promise, I knew I would get there in the end.

'Finding Happiness Again' was the post whereby I reintroduced my blog. (If you want to read it, you can find it here). This post will always hold extreme sentimental value to me, as it was at this point where I felt that I was truly beginning to heal. For a couple of weeks, this post was kept on the notes section of my iPhone, yet I was finding myself re-reading it whenever I needed encouragement or a bit of motivation, and knew that I simply had to post it. So, after deliberating it for hours, I finally pressed the 'Publish' button, and I haven't looked back since. It was one of the most terrifying things I can say I've ever done, as I felt I was sharing a part of me that I was unsure would be accepted. 

I'm pretty sure I mention this in most of my posts, but without the support and encouragement I have received, I know for a fact that I wouldn't be doing this. These posts would perhaps only exist in my notebook, or maybe not at all. People often ask me how I manage to write one every single week, and all I can ever reply to that is that I simply love it. This brings me such happiness, and whilst I often stumble across subject matters which are uncomfortable and difficult to talk about, it helps me more than anyone can ever truly understand. 

The truth is, I don't know where any of this is going. All I know is that I love doing it, and can't ever imagine myself not. Writing has become a massive part in my life, and I never want to give it up. So, to finish this off I'm going to quote the iconic David Bowie, as I feel that it sums up everything I have just spoken about.

 "I don't know where I'm going from here, but I promise it won't be boring." 

I hope you're having a fantastic day, and I will see you next week.

Grace x 


  1. Now this, this is a pretty collection of words.
    I'm flattered that such a writer likes my own writing, keep doing what you're doing please.

    Dottie James

    1. You've just completely made my day! Thank you so so much, that really means a lot ☺️ Xx


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