My Fear of Paper

Brandon - Minneapolis, Minnesota
Entered on May 23, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: fear

I believe in the fear inspired by a blank piece of paper. Beginning this written piece, I was frightened. The intense whiteness blinds the eyes. The jarring contrast made by the first pencil scratch engrains it into your mind. Every new word makes you more committed to the previous words. Until everything is scratched out, and once again, you are left with whiteness except with an indecipherable black mark at the top of the page.

With a blank piece of paper, everything is possible. Words have the power to inspire nations to move and ordinary people to change the way they act. This possibility is frightening. Yet the opposite is just as terrifying as well. You can write a terrible piece of work. Words that make people scoff or make fun of you. You can say the wrong things, which break relationships and destroy everything worth living for in your life. All of this wanders through your mind before a single word is written. Indeed, even after the work is done, the reception can change your work entirely as well. I believe the author can never fully perceive the complicated implications of words, and, thus, the author is giving up the world and himself to powers, which he does not understand. He is rolling the dice, and leaving everything up to fate.

Before a work is begun, these extreme possibilities are before him. A blank piece of paper is the canvas on which the purest form of individuality and character are painted. One has to break out of the comfortable group, and let his voice ring out. I believe all humans want to be accepted. Whether by his friends, society, morals or god, everyone wants someone or something to help them out. Yet, with a blank piece of paper, what is written down is forever preserved. The brevity of words cannot be hidden behind and faulty memories are not used for excuses. This is one testament of your individuality, which can break yourself from the comfortable group, which you claim to be a part of.

A white sheet. This is what haunts my waking dreams and my essays. This incredible opportunity to do great good and terrible destruction. I believe that freedom is more frightening than a prison. In a prison, you do not hold any responsibility, but in freedom, there is no one else to blame. We as humans want excuses to help our own feelings of possible guilt. Yet, on a white sheet of paper, nothing can.

In the end though, perhaps I simply need to fill the empty space of a page. I believe that I have to fill those awkward silences with words, those canvases with paintings and a piece of paper with words. There I have filled my compulsive need. I have overcome my fear and put words on the page. Now I leave it up to fate to determine what the consequences are.