Given all the preparation the Thanksgiving holiday requires, all the logistics, meal-arranging, guest inviting and house visiting, I am going to keep things short and sweet so everyone can get on with the art of surviving the first of the main cold-month holidays. This won't be about being thankful, but more about giving thanks. And by giving thanks, I mean in that way only a writer can - by putting together a quick little piece of writing.
The best way I can think of when it comes to using writing in everyday life - and especially during the holidays - is the simple act of a toast. Everyone's gathered around the table, serving up another helping of something or the other, chatting about this and that, then someone clinks a glass, gets everyone's attention, and announces they would like to make a toast. As far as writers go, this is the perfect situation: a happy audience, perhaps some already with a few adult beverages in them, a festive mood, and nobody ready to leave. This is like the best open mic night you could ask for.
At this point, you make a toast and win the crowd over with your beautiful words and heartfelt sentiments, making it sound as impromptu as possible. Everyone is moved, and nobody knows you've been preparing those words for the better part of a week, sweating over just the right thing to say. As a writer, you are allowed to cheat like this. You can spend hours writing up an awesome toast, practicing, rehearsing, and getting everything just perfect, then dropping the thanks on the dinner crowd with a casual air of genuine feeling. It'll make the holiday dinner truly memorable.
Yes, this is kind of like weaponizing the talent of writing, but it is using it for good and not evil. As writers, we should look for opportunities to use our skills to interject beauty and emotion into the everyday world, and lift up those around us. Of course, if you wish to use your skills for evil, I can't stop you, but this is the holiday season where I try to be a little better than I usually am. Save the evil for January.
I will be in a gravy-induced coma this coming Friday, so my next post will be on November 28th. Happy Thanksgiving, and I hope you write a wonderful toast.
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