Monday, June 4, 2012

Because Your Words Will Live On

Laurie's Journal

My entry this Monday will be short but I hope it inspires you.

This week I heard about this 22-year-old Yale grad whose words--sadly--have outlived her.

Marina Keegan Final Essay 

Her essay: The Opposite of Loneliness

Marina penned the final words of her essay in the Yale Daily News not long before commencement. They were: "Let's make something happen in this world."

She died in a car accident days later.

But her words have gone viral, been echoed again and again on the internet, via social networking and in the news, been read and acknowledged and taken to heart by hundreds of thousands if not millions. Her words have lived on.

It hit me that writers don't build tangible things that will last, but we do build ideas, characters, emotions and worlds that will live long after we're gone by affecting anyone who reads them. Our work will be our pyramids, our castles, our carved monuments and our memorials. Our mark in the endless march of time.

Will our words be around 100 years from now? 1,000? 5,000? 10,000?  It's impossible to know. But a little bit of us will live on in every person who was inspired, moved or entertained by our work, and who passes a little of that on to the next generation...and the next.

Stories grow from our experiences and in turn pass on to and into the experience of others.

As Marty McFly would say, "That's heavy."

Let's make something happen in this world, indeed. Write that next word, sentence, chapter, novel. Write the story of your heart. That profound masterpiece. That amazing epic still hatching in your head.

Because your words will live on.

And thank you, Marina, for what you left for all of us.



  1. It reminds me of Roy's death scene in Bladerunner, where he talks a out the things he's seen and that all those things will be lost now. It's one thing that drives me to write when nothing else does. I don't want those words to be lost, even if perhaps they won't mean anything else to anyone. Those and my children are all I really have to leave.


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