mission wooden blocks on white surface

The Writer’s Mission Statement

I started blogging on WordPress because I wanted to practice writing. Although I’ve written and published, mostly technical books but also a memoir about my beloved father, I had a sense that I could hone the skill of putting words together to describe life and myself more adeptly.

What I’ve found is that the practice of writing has changed me. Whenever I put life down in words on paper, it creates new clarity, distinctions, and feelings. Both the effort to define, describe, or narrate something, and the benefit of the insightful and resonating feedback I get in comments, combine to generate something new.

Which makes me wonder – could I write a mission statement as a blogger? Understanding that it started simply as this:

I write to become better at writing.

I think it’s transformed to this:

I write because the act of putting words to the experience of life deepens my journey and creates intentionality. Writing, reading other’s offerings, responding to comments, all affirms life as it is and as I wish it to be, uncovering gems of insight that shine best when shared with others. However I started this practice, I find now that I can’t stop because writing things out helps to build an entirely new life: one that encourages the mining of details and observations about this present moment, has hope for giving and receiving insight, and creates a legacy of learning that benefits my children.

What about you? Could you write a mission statement?

I’ve posted a related piece on my personal blog: When I Write. My memoir about my father can be found on Amazon: Finding My Father’s Faith. I also post on Mondays at the Heart of the Matter blog. You can find me on Instagram and Twitter @wynneleon

(featured photo from Pexels)

44 thoughts on “The Writer’s Mission Statement

  1. I love your mission statement, Wynne. I think I’d have to steal/borrow a favorite quote from C.S. Lewis: “I do not sit down at my desk to put into verse something that is already clear in my mind. If it were clear in my mind, I should have no incentive or need to write about it. We do not write in order to be understood; we write in order to understand.” I guess I could put a “Vicki spin” on Lewis’ brilliance and offer this as a mission statement: “I write to clear out my gunk.” Less poetic, though, huh? 😉💗😉

    1. I love that! At some point, I found myself, at times, asking people to write down what they mean rather than just saying it out loud only. There’s an amazing clarity that comes from writing things down. Not necessarily because they’re right the first time around, but because they are concrete and can be seen for what they are, and be then improved. When we say something, we may “change” it every time we say it. Not maliciously, just because it fits better. And that fluidity does not always allow for improvement in the same way that having the words written down allows a sense of clarity that allows them to evolve to where we want/need them to be.

      I found that invaluable at work when getting customer requirements. When they describe what they want it’s often everything under the Sun and some things that are buried deep underground. But once it’s written down they look at 90% of it and know that having 48 buttons on a remote does not make it “better”, just more complicated to use, and it’s easier to discuss what the remote should do.

      Clearly I need to iterate on this more: in my head, before it was in words, it sounded so clear… 😁

      1. I love this, EW! Yes, the 48 buttons on the remote is such a perfect example. And you are right that things just get wiggly when we don’t write them down. Even it’s just a personal goal. Right! And your point was well made – I got it! Thanks for writing it down!

      2. It’s been a long time personal pet peeve of mine, that I really noticed when my parents first came to visit us and we needed to have 3 pages worth of instructions for the remotes (sadly, plural at the time :D). And what’s truly funny is when you look at the history of remotes, they started out being as simple as the best ones are today, just the “right” buttons, like on an old ipod. And over time they became the 48-button monsters they are today. Go figure “new and improved”? 😀

      3. Ahh…I love all of this, EW! clarity….clarity…clarity. Verbal descriptions can veer off into all sorts of directions, but committing to words by writing? I think you’re spot on. What a brilliant observation. 🥰🥰🥰

  2. “What I’ve found is that the practice of writing has changed me. Whenever I put life down in words on paper, it creates new clarity, distinctions, and feelings.”

    Such powerful words Wynne 👏🏿👏🏿

    Excellent piece ❤️

  3. Thanks for this post and for sharing why you started blogging.
    When did you start writing, if I can ask, and
    has your writing changed since you started?

    I resonate with your point about writing.
    Through writing, we humanise many of the human experiences we feel alone in. ( among other things)
    And by sharing it, we often see others go through similar processes.

    1. What a great question about when I started writing. I started blogging regularly about 3 years ago. Before that I did technical writing and my memoir about my dad so I’d say for 10 years in a broader sense.

      I love your point about humanizing the experiences we feel and finding out we aren’t alone. That’s a beautiful statement!

  4. I have started writing in my childhood, when my parents offered me a notebook with a very peculiar title: my life. I have continued journaling throughout my teenager years and ended up with writing a book that is still in draft. I published though a book that as become the basis of my blog today. I write because I like it, as simple as that 😊 and I miss the fact that I cannot write on a notebook any longer only because I wouldn’t be able to read my handwriting 🤨. Thank you for your insight Wynne!

    1. I love that story about your parents giving you a notebook, Cristiana! What a wonderful title for a kid to fill that notebook.

      And I love your simple and direct statement about writing – that’s perfect!

  5. Both of your mission statements are powerful. I like the simplicity of the first one, and then the second one because your mission has expanded with experience.

  6. Oooh, I found my myself nodding while reading you mission statement, Wynne, especially this: “affirms life as it is and as I wish it to be”. Beautiful!

    I started writing in 2018, rock-bottom sick but in denial with the hopes of getting my cognitive gears moving in preparation to apply for graduate school in human-centered engineering/ergonomics. Ha! That didn’t happen, yet I didn’t stop writing. My mission statement today would be to disseminate the things I’ve learned through my health journey to help others. Sharing the treatments I’ve discovered to possibly alleviate others’ suffering and passing along the lessons I’ve learned to help empower others to take the reigns of their life, rekindle hope, and continue taking baby steps forward. A big theme for me is, “It’s not my fault, but it’s my responsibility”. I’m writing what I wish I had access to ~5-8 years ago… wholehearted validation of my experience with zero tolerance for excuses.

    1. What an incredible way to describe how your writing mission has evolved. And it seems like you have perfectly described paying forward your hard-earned experience to others that might be at the beginning of their journeys. What a beautiful mission! Your theme about fault/responsibility is so powerful too!

  7. A mission statement? To say what needs to be said, including that from which others might turn away, without regard for chasing “likes,” though I do admit I like them!

    1. “To say what needs to be said” – that’s powerful truth-telling. Especially from people like you who are doing it to help others whether or not it makes them popular. I’d say you are delivering to your mission statement pretty darn well, Dr. Stein!

      1. Thank you, Wynne. Of course, what needs to be said is a matter of opinion. That said, I have the sense that there is some hesitation in the part of the blogging world I read. For all the distress in the world and the threat of climate disaster and dictatorship, these are almost never mentioned as contributors to the global malaise. Therapists in practice say it is mentioned a lot.

      2. That is so fascinating, Dr. Stein. Those big problems – I wonder (speaking for myself), if they are almost too big to tackle. Now you have me thinking if there was any way I could write about them.

  8. Love your mission statement. Love the work and thought that you put into it. Gonna have to print that out. So many different takeaways. I love that it started out to simply get better and has evolved into something so much deeper and thought-provoking. Whatever the mission, please definitely keep it up. Love the realism and positivity!

    1. Thanks, Brian. I’m so grateful that whatever the mission, writing has led me to good friends like you who share this interesting and fun journey!

  9. Mission statements have always been hard to write. What level of introspection is expected here?
    I write because I am.
    I write because I can.
    I write to make a statement.
    It helps me make it through the day,
    No matter what you think or say.

  10. What you have listed as a mission statement is the real reasons for writing. You don’t write to be popular or make money (if that’s possible). The real rewards for writing aren’t external. The real rewards are internal. It’s what happens to the writer as they write. How it helps one organise their thoughts, how it helps challenge limiting beliefs. How it helps process emotions and otherwise grow as a human being. That’s the reason to write. Everything else is secondary. Beautiful Wynne! 🙏

    1. I love your statement that “the real rewards are internal.” What a beautiful way to put it. Process and grow – it’s what I hope for. Thanks for the insightful comment, AP2!

  11. I write because it helps me sort through the what’s and who’s of myself. I love reading the who’s and what’s of others because it it reminds me that we share so many of the same qualities and characteristics, joys and sorrows. What others write helps me. Maybe what I write may be helpful to others. There is no investment in the outcome—just the realization that we’re all in this together. With great gratitude, I thank those who willing to share from deep within. It is a blessing to all!

    1. What a great statement, Julia! I love what you say that we are all in this together. I can say with complete certainty that what you write is helpful to others! Your note about gratitude for all who are willing to share from deep within really resonates with me too. Yes! Beautifully said, as always!

  12. I’ll have to take another look at my mission statement! I read yours and it resonates so deeply within me.

    In my second marriage my husband would read my journal and then become angry or upset with something I wrote, even though it was supposed to be my private space. I stopped journaling and switched to creating powerful therapeutic art pieces, where I combined words with the artmaking process. While he found some images disturbing (LOL, read my piece about burning the art) he respected it much more, because he understood that it was an art piece.

    I only really returned to writing about what I was feeling after I left him, and I had total freedom to express myself any way I chose to. Writing became part of my therapy, a way to understand and to process my thoughts. Later it became a medium to share lessons learned.

    Love your mission statement!

  13. Although I’ve been blogging, on and off, for a good few years (gaps in between!) I still often feel like a beginner.
    Your words have really resonated with me

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