summing up my life in one word

October 20, 2010 at 12:13 pm 5 comments

By now, you probably know about my love affair with words – I have words that I want to describe me, to describe my year, and that I just really like.  And I think I’ve found one word that describes my entire life.  Who I am, what I love, what I do, and my purpose.

Ready?  It’s story. 

I love telling stories, reading stories, learning stories.  It’s why I sing and why I act – to be a character, to tell their story and their life.  It’s why I dance, because much of my dancing is to songs like I Can Only Imagine, and the dance and the music is a powerful combination for telling a story. 

It’s why I read.

It’s why I write.  It’s why, when I interview people (as I’ve done a few times for class), I feel so much pressure when I sit in front of my computer.  I have only words to bring my readers in and open their eyes to this person’s amazing experiences – and I so badly want to do the job well and do justice to the person’s story. 

It’s why I applied for an internship to promote the College of Science here last semester.  I don’t like science.  I don’t understand half of the technical terms.  But I realized that this wasn’t really about science: it was about telling the stories of the scientists and students and getting people interested.  It was about people and their stories – and that is what I love. 

It’s why I want to go into public relations or journalism – because behind every product or company or news item is a person with a story worth telling. 

I just came back from a guest lecture by Diana Sugg, a Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist who used to work for the Baltimore Sun.  She’s a beat reporter, which means she concentrates one on particular field – in this case, medicine.  But she didn’t win the Pulitzer because she writes dry medicine articles, or even because she interviews experts and distills the terminology so the layman can understand what’s going on.  She won it because she understands the power of story; because she finds the people behind all the experiments and jargon and surgeries and tells their stories.  She writes about horribly tragic things like the mystery surrounding stillbirths, or how doctors deal with the worst part of their jobs: telling family members that a patient has passed on.  But her stories are gripping and moving and powerful, and maybe even evoke change. 

I kind of love this quote from Lord Byron:

“But words are things,

And a small drop of ink,

Falling like dew,

Upon a thought,

Produces that

which makes thousands, perhaps millions, think.”

As a side note, the other lecturer brought in for this Distinguished Writer’s Series was Ken Armstrong, an investigative reporter.  I didn’t get to see him, because he spoke last night and I couldn’t go, but….one of the things he’s done was co-write an “investigation of the death penalty that helped prompt the state’s governor to suspend executions and eventually to empty Death Row. Five inmates profiled in that series were later freed; they were either pardoned based on innocence or had the charges against them dropped.”

This guy saved lives with his words.  Some of the people in death row were later proved innocent. 

I love stories because they are powerful. 

And the most powerful story is the one that all others try to mirror: the story of redemption and mercy, grace and ransom and eternal life that I get to share with the world.

This is my life.  Story. 

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Entry filed under: art, stories & writing, words.

On being a Christian. And an artist. Perfection. It’s a disease.

5 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Joanna  |  October 20, 2010 at 1:10 pm

    oh, darling, that was beautiful. What else can I say?

    love you oodles!

    Reply
  • 2. abeautifulordinary  |  October 20, 2010 at 5:05 pm

    Hey Megan! You probably don’t remember me, but I met you and Jessina at PHC Roots of Leadership camp in 2008. Anyway, I love the way that you put that! You summed up my passion for the written word and journalism perfectly. Thanks for sharing and being a blessing. 🙂

    Reply
  • 3. Annie  |  October 20, 2010 at 10:13 pm

    and this, my friend, is a part of YOUR story. you have such a way with words, megan! i love this post.

    Reply
  • 4. singamelody  |  October 21, 2010 at 7:43 pm

    beautifully written. very true.

    Reply
  • […] think Starbucks just validated my entire existance.  Thanks, beloved coffee […]

    Reply

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