Wednesday, 10 September 2014

The emergence of the emerging writer

What does it mean, to emerge? How does one 'emerge' as a writer? 

Contrary to the magician’s spiel, nothing comes from nothing or nowhere. Even the Bible tells us that 'there is no new thing under the sun.' From philosophy to systems theory, religion to the life sciences, computer science to economics, the 'new' is traceable – though not reducible – to the history of its emergence: from chaos to order; from illegibility to pattern; from disparate parts to integrated whole. 

'Emerging' describes a process; a movement; a channel from one location to another; a transition between one state and another. The caterpillar emerges from inside its cocoon and … behold – the limping, crawling length of wrinkled flesh has morphed into an airborne figure of winged elegance. The resultant, resplendent butterfly seems to be an entirely new and original creature. 

Not so however. The fact that it has emerged tells us that it was actually already in existence, albeit secretly, as yet unformed, not yet integrated, hidden, buried, folded in upon itself, sleeping, invisible, silent, gathering its energy, waiting for the catalyst into momentum.

With great pleasure, over the course of this subject and beyond, I have watched this process, this movement, this birthing, in students who have found their wings and taken off. With great delight I have looked up and waved from the ground.

In the field of writing creativity is the vital spark that lights the passage towards the Promised Land, that shimmering horizon where the emerging shapes itself into the emergent. 

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