Why the Black Man Must Write

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Why the Black Man Must Write


Interesting title, right? I think so myself.

While I can use any nationality in the title, I chose to use the black man for a couple of reasons.

The first one being that I am a black man, and for the longest time I just automatically thought that writing wasn’t for me. I automatically thought that I wasn’t good enough to write.

And as I got older, I kind of started thinking about what were the things that shaped that reality for me? Why was I convinced that I had nothing to offer to the world when it came to creating, from a writing standpoint?

I tell you, mainly it was because in school I wasn’t good at English, I wasn’t good at spelling. This was something that I automatically counted myself out.

I was that kid that would come into class and put my head down because I was afraid to read aloud in front of everyone else.

So, quite naturally, you could imagine, I would have nothing to do with anything to do with writing or reading. So, this is why I wanted to make this blog — because I know there’s other young black men out there that feel the same way.

I was going to say that there’s other young men period, black, white, no matter what. But I’m focusing mainly on the black man for this reason, because I know for a fact from where I come from most of the kids don’t have examples that could talk to them from this perspective, this point of view.

I even thought about taking my hat off today because typically when I want to do a video I want to be “presentable”. I don’t want to come off a certain way.

But, the thing that I’m realizing and I’m understanding is that everyone’s differences don’t count them out. Just because I don’t come in a suit and a tie with a smile  — don’t believe that I don’t love God. Or just because I don’t come in a suit and tie doesn’t mean I’m not about my business.

And so the typical frame of an author that I see, and I saw, never looked like me. So, I want to be an example, but I also want to get this point across.

I’m going to go back and tell you a story about me growing up. As I stated earlier, me growing up, I wanted nothing to do with writing, I wanted nothing to do with reading. And, my sister, my younger sister who’s two years younger than me was the complete opposite.

It was like she was born into it, because our mother wasn’t a reader, she wasn’t someone that read to us all the time or anything like that. My sister just came out wanting to read, she came out very intelligent.

I remember, at an early age feeling like my sister was a lot more smarter than me and that messed with my self-confidence even more.

She would read some of anything, but most of the books that I saw, I had absolutely no interest in.

You see, I wanted to watch stuff like New Jack City. The outside world, the reality that I faced, people were selling drugs, people were shooting, people were robbing, people were going to prison.

All the men that I knew were in jail or on the corners. So, the reality that I saw was not like that, what was in those books. I couldn’t escape into anything to do with teen love or any of that stuff, that’s not what I was looking for.

I didn’t even know that this played a part in me not wanting to read.

But it wasn’t until one day I was in school and they did a mandatory thing where we had to read this book. We had to read a book and we had to do a report on it.

And I would typically do the little thing where I would look on the back and I would try to hurry up and I would try to write something from what I got from the back.

But, for some reason this time I figured I’m going to have to get a book and I’m going to have to actually read this book. We went to the library and they said you can pick out any book that you want, I’m not going to give you a book, but you have to read this book.

I picked up this book, and it was a book called Scorpions by Walter Dean Myers.

I was really intrigued by this book because, first of all, I saw that the person on the book cover looked like me. And also, some of the lingo that I read real quick resonated with me because I recognized it, I understood it. Me coming from the streets, I understood what it was talking about in this book, so I’m going to read this book.

And I tell you, this is the first time in my life that I had ever picked up a book and was serious about reading this book and I could not put it down.

I finally understood how my sister felt. I was engulfed in this book by Walter Dean Myers, called Scorpion.

The main character had a lot in common with me, his mother working, him and his siblings at home, still being faced with the little things in the community and stuff like that.

I connected with this book and for the first time I was just blown away with reading.

Now I would be lying if I said I became an avid reader after that. I just wanted to stress the point that this was my first time being able to connect in a book.

And as I reflect on it now and try to wonder — why did it take me so long to get to that place?

It was mostly because everything that I saw and everything that I heard in those books, I didn’t identify with.

And so, as I look at my little niece the other day, on her third birthday, put on a little doctor’s coat and say she wanted to be a doctor, because she was looking at this young character, Doc McStuffins, someone that looked like her, and be so excited about being a doctor.

It just came to me and I realized, I’ve known this, but it just really connected and that’s why I wanted to write and do this vlog today because I want you to see the importance on characters that look like you.

If you’re black, if you’re hispanic, if you’re indian, I don’t care what you are, there needs to be books, there needs to be content, I don’t just want to say books, because content is important.

The thing about it is, is we all die. You die, I die, we all die, but the content lives on. And so, here it is, people are putting out content that’s going to live for years and years. If you look at the Bible, that content has been passed on forever.

I was watching a little documentary the other day and they’ve got a gay Bible out now. The thing about it is, even if people don’t resonate with that Bible today — 20, 30, 40, 50 years from when everybody dies off there’s going to be a whole new set of people and they’re going to be living by a whole different set of standards.

Why do people write stuff, why do they create literature?

They create literature because literature, or content, lives on.

And so, when I say why the black man must write it’s because you have to leave your story. You have to leave content.

You can’t leave it up to everyone else to paint your narrative.

We’ve done that for so long and that’s why the narratives, even to you and to your little kids, they buy into this narrative of what we’re supposed to be like, what you’re supposed to be like.

And I just don’t want to make this a white vs black thing, I’m specifically talking to black people.

You have a responsibility to create.

You can’t leave it to everyone else to create. And this is the reason why I have this new found passion. It’s not like I was born and I’ve had this desire to write, write books, children’s books, adult books, whatever, but I’ve always had ideas.

I’ve always had stories, I just didn’t know I was good enough to write them down.

I just didn’t know I was good enough to put it into action. Because somehow, society has shaped it in my mind as a little kid that it wasn’t for me.

But, now as I’m older I see. I want to encourage each and every person, I don’t care how good you are, how good you think you are, there’s editors for that.

There’s transcribers for that, there’s people that can take your thoughts and put it into words.

You need to create content. Your voice needs to be heard. No one else has your voice. No one else can give what you can give.

And these are self-talks I have for myself.

When I first had ideas about writing, I begged somebody, went to my sister, went to everybody — “I need you to write this!”

But no one took the time to be passionate enough to do exactly what I wanted them to do. When I did find people to do it, they couldn’t match the voice that I had. Or match the understanding, they couldn’t get out what I wanted to get out.

So, guess who’s left to do it. You.

And whatever it is you put out, is going to live on, someone’s going to hear it, and depending on what it is you write, you could change the world. You could make the world a better place, at least for one person.

So, why the black man must write is because you have to leave your narrative, you have to tell your story, you can’t leave it up to everyone else.

You’ll die, but your words, your content, your videos, your writings, those things live on.

If you want to be remembered for doing anything, the best way to do it is to put it in a book, to put it in video form, put it in audio form. You have to leave content. And that’s what it is.

I’ll tell you this, once you start, you won’t regret it. If you’re anything like me, you’ll be so excited about being able to overcome this place that you thought that you could never go and it’ll encourage you to continue to make more content.

I started off with one book idea, I’ve already finished three children’s books. I’m half through two adult books. And it’s been a blessing to me. I’ve always had stories on my heart, I just never thought that I was the one that could be able to put them out there.

And so, you can look forward to a lot from me and I’m going to continue to create. And it’s going to venture off into more than just writing. I highly want to encourage you guys, encourage you to get out there and start putting your words, putting your thoughts into words. It’s important, it’s important for the future, for your legacy.

So, that’s really all I had today for this blog, and I hope you would take the time to review this and perhaps share it with someone, share it with a young man.

Share it with a teenage boy that may be in that same place that I was in – could care less about school, could care less about reading, because everything that they saw it wasn’t reality. It wasn’t the reality that they have back at home. There’s plenty of people like that.

So, that’s all I have for you.

Take care, take charge, and God bless!

TW Bright

Be sure to subscribe to my blog, my Facebook, and YouTube. Find me at twbrightbooks.com – that’s my personal website. You can find me through Instagram and Twitter all on there.


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