by Ramisa Raya, Age 15, Bangladesh
I can go on the Internet, pull up a painting and show it to you. I can give you headphones so that you can listen to my favourite song. The reactions are instant: you choose whether you like it or not in a second or two. But I can’t make you read my favourite book.
Of course, I’ll always recommend it to you, but you won’t “have time.” A book isn’t instantly appreciated. You’re more compelled to listen to somebody’s favourite music or look at their favourite painting or watch their favourite You Tube video than read their favourite book.
Why are writers unacknowledged in comparison to other artists?
To answer this question, I have two words: instant appreciation. Musicians and actors are stage people–sometimes, even painters showcase their talent by a live demonstration– and become instantly renowned. Within a couple of minutes, their performance is finished and appreciated. Writers and writing are different.
Writers cannot perform their skills on stage. Although writers can read their work aloud, it’s not the same. Musicians get promoted on the radio; artists show their work in public buildings. Actors show off in advertisements, YouTube videos or on television. Their performances, their music, their art–you can love or hate it instantly. Your opinion may differ over time, but that reaction is instant.
Writers don’t have those moments of instant appreciation and applause. They aren’t the same as other artists. It’s hard to recognize them. They live in a quiet, lonely world of dreamers; one I’ve joined myself with no intention of leaving.
Ramisa Raya is a 15 year old high-school student from Bangladesh who loves writing as a past-time. She dreams of becoming a psychiatrist when she grows up. Read Ramisa’s blog.
Ramisa’s article hits on the major reasons why I do what I do for young writers. I know they are lonely. I know they need feedback. I know that we have two unique challenge as artists. One, we don’t often get to showcase our work in front of a live audience and get immediate feedback or recognition. Two, audiences have to work quite hard to enjoy our art. Reading takes time and energy. I mean you can’t hang a book up in a gallery and expect people to fawn over it after a two-second glance. Writing just doesn’t work that way. There is no instant appreciation. – Laura