Had a chance to catch up with some reading over the weekend and happened upon a great article in my Kenyon College Alumni Bulletin on alum Laura King, class of ‘86. King, now a Ph.D. in psychology, has made a career — and a good one at that — out of studying happiness.
And guess what, dear readers and fellow writers? King has determined (through hard science no less) that writing is one of the biggest, most effective, most opening-ist keys to happiness. Yes, writing! I know this might be a wee bit counterintuitive to those who occasionally consider papering the guest bath with rejection letters, but King’s research has proven otherwise.
Writing, it seems, is good for you. The article reports that “…the benefits of intensive two-minute writing sessions may be longer lasting than those of normal journal writing. King recommends focused bursts of writing.” The link betweeen mental health and quick quotidian quill-fests is so unassailable that “the phenomena has been given a name: ‘the two-minute miracle.’ ”
OK, I’m no scientist but the above results beg certain unscientific hypotheses. Are bloggers happier than other writer types since they tend to work in short bursts of word deliverment? Is this why novelists are moody and depressive? NOT because of the constant, inescapable, inevitable, and ongoing-but-one-day-surmountable rejection but because novelists write for long disciplined stretches of time instead of penning their prose in a mere two sweeps of the second hand?
The link to this latest issue is not up yet but visit the Bulletin archive anyway. Novelists will find it a great distraction between those depression-generating writing sessions. And bloggers will surely find inspiration for a two-minute miracle. Like I did just now.
Happy? You bet!
Happier? When that agent calls.
Happiest? When that agent calls with our publisher.