The Challenge of a Writer in a Society That Doesn’t Read

One of the bigger challenges I face as a writer in this day and age is the growing amount of accepted illiteracy that has spread through our society like a plague. Basically, the worst part of being a writer is that nobody wants to read anymore.

Writing-writing-27456811-500-374It is a challenge for me to have family, friends, and associates, though they say they appreciate all that I do, find themselves unable to harness the time or concentrated effort to appreciate what I do best. Though they often marvel at my accomplishments and ask about the intricacies of my journey, they cannot rustle up enough curiosity about these things to actually read about them or acknowledge the journey I have left in ink. Though I regularly post ideas, encouragements, and what I consider to be avenues of understanding, of the over 1400 people that I share them with, only very few will take the time to process them.

Yet the writer’s job is not necessarily to be read. I have come to find that my writing often does more to allow me to understand what I think than it does to allow others to understand what I think. So perhaps, like the Buddhist monks who spend months creating mandalas out of colored sand only to brush them away upon completion so they can start again, my words will merely be whisked away by the winds of information overload.

Fortunately, though my audience may not have yet become acquainted with what I have to say, I appreciate the process of my craft enough to continue to write the world regardless of how much or how little of it is read.

Steve McAllister is the author of The Rucksack Letters and How to Survive an Estralarian Mind Meld. He posts regularly at, and sometimes posts atAnything ArtsSarasota Music Scene, and Elephant Journal, and is currently the Director of Operational Development for the Common Wealth Time Bank in Sarasota, Florida. Follow him on TwitterFacebook, and YouTube.


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