#tbt – Finding the voice within

As a PhD student, we have to attend 2 mandatory PhD colloquys. Today, I attended my second colloquy. As part of the plenary talk, the president of the seminary was talking about the need for each of us to find our own voice. This has been something of a struggle for me as an academic. However, this has not been the first time I have thought about this issue. I actually wrote about this very issue awhile ago as a guest blogger with Amused Now. This is the present me trying to learn from the past me. Oh, how easy it is to forget things. Sigh.

Here’s the link to the blog post. Or, just continue reading below. Hope you like it!

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Why? I seriously have to ask myself that question. Why bother writing a book? There’s enough lining the book stores. Why add one more to the pile? If I don’t ask myself this question now, I know that when I’m in the middle of writing a book, when I feel discouraged and feel like I’m drifting farther and farther away from my deadline, I won’t stand a chance of finishing it. I have to ask this now or else be crippled into lack of action later.

My initial response is “because I like writing.” While that may be true, writing a book can be a daunting task. It is not for the undisciplined.

When there is no “inspiration,” can I keep going based on sheer will and determination until the next wave of inspiration hits me? What if I only have that one initial wave of inspiration to tide me over throughout the whole journey? Is that enough? And so, I realize, that I have to dig deeper. I needed a better reason. I needed one that can sustain me throughout the writing process: from the initial brainstorming, to the first chapter, and the never ending edits that will come along with a “finished” product.

There’s a scene in the movie The King’s Speech when the king’s speech therapist asks him why people should listen to him? To which the king replies: “Because I have a right to be heard. I have a voice!” I was moved beyond comprehension by this brief exchange on the screen by two amazing actors. I wanted to get up from my seat and yell “Yes, I do have a voice!”

However, I was able to restrain myself and I am sure that those in the theater are happy that I did. What he said was true! I do have a right to be heard because I have a voice! I am who I am and that is enough for me to be heard. That is why I am writing a book. I want my voice to be heard loud and clear. I want my voice to be heard because I know somewhere out there, someone will read it and think “I am not alone.”

Right now, I have a couple of ideas that I am trying to work through. As I was initially brainstorming about ideas for the book, I was amazed and surprised that I had a few that I wanted to write. I initially thought I would have nothing to work with. As I work through each idea, it will give me a greater sense of which idea needs to be heard now. I am heavily inspired by classic philosophers and current pop culture trends. I am looking forward to write a book fashioned by my life experiences and travels across the world.

Trust me, you’re going to love it.

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