Read for a while on Medium and you’ll see the debate: do the “personal development” writers deserve to be at the top of the charts… every day?
What does it say about the state of society that dumbed down listicles and celebrity gossip often rise to the top of the popularity charts… at the same time in depth investigative journalism pieces slip by unnoticed and stories of talented social entrepreneurs fly by with little fanfare.
Does good writing even matter anymore? Or have we simply created an environment where the listicle with a catchy headline will always win?
Let’s follow our question down the rabbit hole of ‘why.’
To begin with, why does writing matter at all?
So that people can learn new things.
Why does people learning new things matter?
So that people develop a sense of intellectual curiosity and have a basic understanding about how the world works.
Why does it matter for people to have intellectual curiosity and understand how the world works?
So that they start to care about causes that matter to them.
Why does it matter for people to care about causes?
So that they take action.
Why does it matter for people to take action?
To create change.
Why does change matter?
Because that’s what people like us do. We take care of each other. That’s the only way the world works over the long term. If we care enough to take care of one another.
Writing matters because change matters. Writing, at its best, activates people. And people who are activists are the people who create change.
The alternative? Well, it’s a world full of people reading about 10 things to do before 8am and what Kim Kardashian wore to her birthday party.
If you want to lead, read. And when you read enough that you have something to say, write. It’s a virtuous cycle.
Good writing will always matter. And the more good people become good writers, the more good writing we’ll have to read.
You know how you become a good writer? By writing. So…
Thanks to David Hopkins for the inspiration for today’s post. His post on how Friends trained us to shun the intellectuals both caught my attention and made an important argument for the value of nerds. (I’ve always been a nerd, and I shunned that part of me for far too long.)