"Opportunities multiply as they are seized."-Sun Tzu, The Art of War
Let us say for a moment that the writer, for all intensive purposes, must serve as a societal teacher of sorts. I simply say this so that those who feel that they are not included will understand that there is little separation from the role and the responsibility. That being said, let us look at the writer through the ages to see how the responsibility of the writer has impacts as a societal teacher.
History and culture tell us that people have passed down many traditions through oral traditions. They have used stories and fables, songs, and histories to give an account of what one generation has passed down to the next. Yet, writing leaves an impression that the visual artwork and artifacts do not contain. Writings, whether on tapestries or papyrus, shed light into the introspective and reflective thoughts of a people at a given time.
As writers, we are not only to speak out about how it is. We must cultivate the inquiry of thought to see how things could possibly be for both now and the eventual future. As daunting as the task may sound, every time a write picks up pen and pad, the writer engages in infusing inquiry. The fiction writer does so when he or she exaggerates a bit of truth into a fictional account. Even the so-called genre of "creative nonfiction" does so. Inquiry is infused among the readers. This transpires when the reader is thrust into a frenzy to search for more about Milan and its history or geography because the writer chose to use it as the backdrop of a romance novel or an espionage thriller. It occurs when a Zane Grey or Louis L'Amour cause a reader to visit the badlands that lie somewhere betwixt and between Nevada, Utah and California. It is inquiry that lies at the heart of the reader's escapade with the writer's writing.
Thus, as we write, let us inspire our readers to inquire further. Let our words generate some innate urge to discover more. Let our publications do more than soar to the heights of best-seller lists and Sunday morning paper book reviews. Let our very stories and tales cause some down and depressed soul to become so engaged that they seek and search on a quest for their heart's desire to be quenched through further inquiry.