Friday, October 14, 2011

So you wanna be a writer?

I could talk all day about writing, and about poetry, and what it really is.
I could spend all day talking about how Poetry is all about feeling, and how when you write a poem, It should be pure heart. You should just cut open your skin and let your blood flow out onto the paper.
I could spend all day talking about how much I hate Robert Frost and Ted Kooser. But they aren't worth the time, They aren't worth wasting my fingers on.
I could spend all day talking about real poets and real writers, I could spend all day talking about guys like Charles Bukowski, William S. Burroughs, Stephen Chbosky, Anis Mojgani, Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Jack Kerouac, Anthony Burgess, Jason Safran Foer, John Steinbeck, J.D. Salinger, and Ayn Rand.

I could spend all day talking about writing and poetry,


I would just be stealing every word and every thought from Bukowski. I could NEVER, do as good of a job as Bukowski does in his poem "So you want to be a writer?" But I doubt ANY of you have read any of his work. Do any of you even know who Charles Bukowski is? WHY? Because school doesn't teach you about good poets, and good writers, They tell you Mark Twain is god, and That Shakespeare is the best you can get, They say Willa Cather was a good writer, well school is wrong, and Davis, YOU ARE WRONG.
So if you haven't been introduced to good writing and good poetry, if you haven't read a poem that isn't about snow, or corn, or paths, or villages, or bullshit.
If you haven't heard of Bukowski. You're whole universe is about to be destroyed by the Death Star of poets.

Do you want to be a writer?
Well. . . The first step is to write.
Still can't do it?

then read this.

so you want to be a writer?  
by Charles Bukowski

if it doesn't come bursting out of you
in spite of everything,
don't do it.
unless it comes unasked out of your
heart and your mind and your mouth
and your gut,
don't do it.
if you have to sit for hours
staring at your computer screen
or hunched over your
searching for words,
don't do it.
if you're doing it for money or
don't do it.
if you're doing it because you want
women in your bed,
don't do it.
if you have to sit there and
rewrite it again and again,
don't do it.
if it's hard work just thinking about doing it,
don't do it.
if you're trying to write like somebody
forget about it.

if you have to wait for it to roar out of
then wait patiently.
if it never does roar out of you,
do something else.

if you first have to read it to your wife
or your girlfriend or your boyfriend
or your parents or to anybody at all,
you're not ready.

don't be like so many writers,
don't be like so many thousands of
people who call themselves writers,
don't be dull and boring and
pretentious, don't be consumed with self-
the libraries of the world have
yawned themselves to
over your kind.
don't add to that.
don't do it.
unless it comes out of
your soul like a rocket,
unless being still would
drive you to madness or
suicide or murder,
don't do it.
unless the sun inside you is
burning your gut,
don't do it.

when it is truly time,
and if you have been chosen,
it will do it by
itself and it will keep on doing it
until you die or it dies in you.

there is no other way.

and there never was.


  1. As a writer, I can totally agree with this man. He has it all right.

    Just my observation. Not that it freakin' means anything to you all.

  2. Davis is wrong. Those poems were about complete trash. I like this poem becuase you can actually relate. I don't want to post things 'just to get a woman in my bed' or 'for the fame'. You get the idea. Great writing.

  3. I disagree, I write to get women in my bed. I blog for sex appeal, and its working like a charm. Just last friday me and rihanna got in on in google images.

  4. Wow. You and Bukowski just blew my mind. It's too early for this. Now I have to go teach a class on writing? I don't think I can do it.

  5. Love it. I totally agree with all of it and liked the whole beginning of the post as well.

  6. Truly amazing! Thanks for sharing, and i like how you led up to it.

  7. INTERESTINGly Great, nice job you Dewy.

  8. HOLY SHIT BALLZ... This blows my mind.

    "You're whole universe is about to be destroyed by the Death Star of poets." and this was so true..."

    William R. Holden... You inspire me with your knowledge of great writers and your writing.