Suzanne Wilcox

I write because in 10th grade, Mr. White told my entire English class that the research paper I submitted about the AIDS epidemic was the best paper he had read by a student for as long as he could remember. I write because it was my writing skills that got me my first job out of college, churning out propaganda for a union newspaper from back page (retirement fund updates) to front page (inflammatory character attacks on County Supervisors), all thinly veiled attempts to remind union members why they paid dues.

I write because when I quit that job to be a dutiful wife and mother, I began to die inside and my fragile connection to sanity was the composition book in the linen closet. In the middle of the night, when I had nowhere else to turn, I would tiptoe into the upstairs closet and light a candle to explore ancient, twisted tree roots broken open by raging earthquakes; imagery that appeased the bellowing voices in my head and the whisperings in my aching heart.

I write because eventually I found my way out of the linen closet, leaving behind volumes of composition books filled with demons hiding among the towels and sheets. Having become emboldened enough to write in daylight, I sat at my kitchen table and wrote my story: a miniature memoir that shed light on my path, informing me through 20/20 hindsight. I called it Journey to Love and it culminated with fields of wild flowers sprouting from the mulch and shit that had been my pain.

I write because finally I understood that I had, in fact, been on a path during those years of crying in the dark. I had my feet securely on the ground and I knew how to live intentionally. As a writer, I had real material; my own thickly bound version of Distilled Wisdom.

I write because no sooner did I have my feet on the ground than I embarked on an adventure of self-discovery that included fairies and lengthy conversations with Angels and a year spent in France where I pursued a dedicated study of the nuances of shadow cast by the Eiffel Tower while sipping Champagne.

I write because today I have settled into a practice of energy healing and tarot card reading and I wish to capture the elegance of the Empress Card that I embody. I write to catalog synchronicities so that I won’t forget the miracles, or worse, dismiss them as fantasy. Mostly, I write because I have reclaimed an ancient voice, and that voice dares to speak into the Void. I write so that I can pose questions to the Great Void and listen to Her response. I write because I cherish the conversations that She and I have. And because I revel in the clarity, the warm, tingling Lightening that flows down my spine peaking in electric chills through the skin on my arms into my fingers as I type.

 


 

When the task of writing grows inevitably arduous—and seemingly thankless—we must remember why we started. Inspired by George Orwell’s 1946 essay “Why I Write,” this introspective project highlights our motives for writing. Share your story and join the conversation. Live events are produced throughout the diverse cities of Orange County and feature author readings from curated essay submissions.

  1. Write a 500-word essay explaining why you write.
  2. Submit via Submittable.

The 1888 Podcast Network is a curated collection of educational and entertaining podcasts. Each program is designed to provide a unique platform for industry innovators to share stories about art, literature, music, history, science, or technology.

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