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There’s a fallacy out there in society today that says writing is irrelevant. Vlogs, podcasts, and short-form social media add credence to the idea that current and future generations will learn and communicate through spoken, not written, word. 

Opposed to this popular new concept is The University; seen these days by the young as a staid old structure with creaky bones and ancient philosophies, where greybeards instruct in the ways of the Analytical, Argumentative, and the Expository. Here, the Holy Trinity is Ethos, Logos, and Pathos, and freshmen must fall on their faces and worship, or be burned in the lake of red ink and brimstone.

So if this is the way of the world today, then why write?

These viewpoints of writing and education lie at the extremes of reality. They’re propagated by the constant need for the Now, the Present, and the Experience, and the lack of attention paid to the journey and to process and method.

Cell phone pictures and hastily-typed Tweets are a product of the now, and reflect a lack of attention that discourages thought and discussion, not only between peers but also within oneself. Writing brings a gravity and a careful consideration to communication that is necessary for sharing important concepts and creating attention for one’s ideas. Writing is hard work, and there is little instant gratification. That’s what sets it apart, and why the discipline has come under scrutiny in recent times.

But for writing, the beauty is in the process.

The pursuit of excellence requires the most labor, but also provides the greatest benefit and satisfaction at the end. We don’t write to gain instant fame or recognition that is gone on the next news cycle. We don’t write for a quick “A” that gets lost in the tumult of grades and GPA. We write because our voice deserves to be heard for posterity. We write because what we have to say transcends time and forms of technology.

In writing, we’re finding a piece of our soul and baring it for the world to see. Such a personal and naked act deserves time, attention, and struggle. Writing and the hard-fought writing process provide the authenticity we need to feel confident in expressing ourselves in a timeless medium.

I chose the title “Why We Write” for this post as a nod to the war propaganda film series “Why We Fight”. The films give reasons for why America went to war with the Axis, and demonstrate how the war was being won in the different conflict zones. My hope is that this article boosts your confidence in your writing, and how you’re winning and will continue to win when going through the hard slog of putting thoughts to paper.