How A Library Gave Me An Appreciation for Writing

By Dave Roberts

I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. In the beginning, it was out of necessity or I would have never finished school.

As I grew older, there were moments when I had something to say so I wrote for fun, but I would never call myself a writer as a career or even a hobby for that matter. Grammar and I aren’t the best of friends but we coexist pretty well, at least.

It wasn’t until I became involved in the library world that I learned how important writing can be.

People will believe anything they read, even if it’s not the best-written work. Of course, with the Internet, there is a plethora of reading material out there and it’s a competition of headlines to grab their attention. It’s been this tug-of-war of trying to direct patrons into reading credible material, but how does one compete with the incredible clickbait headlines?

I’m still struggling with this challenge but it has brought the best out in my writing as I’ve needed a way to convey the message in the most entertaining way possible while still purveying the correct information, even if it’s rather dry material. Luckily for me, in a previous life, I wrote newspaper headlines so I do have some practice crafting creative headlines that actually define the story but still make you want to read it.

Here are my two bits of knowledge I’ve learned so far:

  • First, if you can write it in a way that sounds interesting, people will read it. Even if you have to write the most mundane thing ever, if you find a way to make the topic approachable for the everyday person, it becomes an entertaining read.
  • Second, when writing for an informational target, keep in mind just how important a role your words could be playing. When you know your words can have an impact I think it helps them to fly onto the page. Not only that, but if you have a strong purpose, it helps to drive your imagination to create your best piece of writing.

In short, maybe next time you need to write something, imagine yourself as a librarian trying to convince someone to give this great book a chance!

This is one writer’s perspective on his writing journey. Each of us has a different reason for how we got started as a writer and why we write.