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This Veterans Day, Writer’s Relief wants to remember the positive impact writers who are veterans have on our lives and on the world. Add your voice in our comments section!
Why We’re Thankful For Veterans Who Write
Writing about conflict takes courage. Writing about war requires that writers dig deep into their memories, feelings, observations, philosophies, and understanding of the world. When a writer tackles the subject of military conflict, that kind of introspection can be especially challenging. Bravo to veterans who delve deep to deliver authentic, brave works that speak their truth.
A veteran’s shared emotional generosity helps us better understand the world. Writers who are veterans have experiences that many civilians simply don’t understand. Sharing those moments through the written word is an act of generosity that allows readers to learn about life from a military perspective. Veterans don’t have to write about their experiences—sometimes, it might be easier not to. So we applaud veterans who have made the generous effort to share their stories.
The written word offers a more detailed, immersive world for the reader. Book lovers know that there’s no better way to really understand another’s point of view than to “live” it vicariously through the written word. Yes, many movies have been made about war, but reading an essay, story, or poem allows us to see into characters’ minds with breathtaking intimacy that can’t always be conveyed in film.
A first-person point of view makes conflict real instead of abstract. Watching conflicts happen anonymously on the nightly news can—over time—desensitize audiences to the very real, very human struggles of war. The individuals disappear, their stories overshadowed by the one big story. When a veteran tells his or her own story, we’re shown real human faces, real pain, real triumph—as opposed to a vague, less personal narrative.
Every veteran writer shares his or her own truth for posterity. Over time, it seems that some narratives become the de facto “truth” about conflict. When individual writers take the time to share their own unique truths about the experience, those personal narratives stand fixed in a dialogue with the widely accepted story of what happened. And that can only enrich our discussions about the nuances of war.
Read More About Veteran Writers On Veterans Day
QUESTION: Which of the points above resonates most strongly with you?