another reason i write: it "radically changes us one by one"02 Nov 2017
about this time last year, i found (yet another) reason why to write in the way that i do on this blog (daily, mostly unedited, quickly). as per usual, it was something an on being interviewee said. this episode was with mary karr, but the quote i have is actually krista quoting something mary said in her book, the art of memoir. anyways, here’s the segment:
MS. TIPPETT: The last line of The Art of Memoir, you write, “None of us can ever know the value of our lives or how our separate and silent scribbling may add to the amenity of the world if only by how radically it changes us one and by one.” You were writing to other people but that speaks also to the fact that, even as you do that work you’re doing on getting by, being better — trying to be better today than yesterday — there is also this social good. There are these larger ripple effects that get set in motion …even by something like writing memoir about the very particular world in which you grew up…
it’s exactly this ripple effect that seems so compelling. it’s ironic (actually maybe it’s just timely) that this writing snippet felt important to me to write about today. it’s dated in my blog post stub notebook as 25 oct 2016. so it’s been a while, but what feels interesting about it being right now is that there is so much resonance with emergent strategy. adrienne is coming in less than three weeks and there is just so much rippling around. this quote from karr so clearly represents the fractal part of es and it’s just so good.
“None of us can ever know the value of our lives or how our separate and silent scribbling may add to the amenity of the world if only by how radically it changes us one and by one.”
emergent strategy has clearly had a huge splash and impact. but i’ve seen even my own writing have impact. someone told me just yesterday that someone else sent them a blog post of mine and the two of them had a conversation about my thinking in that post. this has happened before and it is just an iceberg-tip indicator of what’s actually happening.
one last thing i’ll say: to some, it might feel sad that the “none of us can ever know the value…” part of the line is there. for me, it feels like a huge relief. i don’t have to know and it’s not even worth trying because i can’t. i obsessively measure lots of things, but know that this thing i can’t measure frees me to just keep acting and know that the ripples will just keep happening.
words / writing / post-processing
460w / 14min / 10min