Why Write? – Rebecca Tantony

Rebecca Tantony is a writer, journalist and poet from Bristol. Her work offers a tapestry of intricate themes, bold writing and passionate intensity, creating a lyrical conversation straight to the heart. When not performing, she teaches spoken word in multiple venues, including the Barbican Theatre, the Royal Geographical Society and as a First Story writer-in-residence. In San Francisco, Rebecca worked for the globally-recognised creative writing centre, 826 Valencia.

Why Write?

As a teenager my friends and I would meet up and we’d play records and listen to hip-hop artists and I just remember sitting there and feeling, ah, this is ordinary. This is triumphs and failures, ups and downs, and the intricacies of what it is to be human. And it was so refreshing at that time to hear people express themselves and to speak their ordinary in their truth.

I think that idea of sharing yourself with the world and speaking out and offering your version of who your are has always remained with me as something incredibly powerful in my life.

It’s confusing at times, being human; it’s wild and it’s messy and yet everyone is individual and everyone has a unique narrative to share with the world that deserves to be heard. And every time that I pick up a book, or hear writers’ work, I find myself in that writing and therefore I learn more about who I am and the world around me. And I think that has sustained throughout for me, as a writer, this idea that when I create a poem or write a short story or an article, that someone out there is hopefully going to be able to go, “I thought that. I think that. That makes me feel less alone. That makes me feel more heard. That makes sense to me.” And there’s something incredibly powerful and unifying about that.

Rebecca Tantony


Tell us why YOU write:

Twitter: @writeday
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Take part on 26th June 2019:

Everyone has a story to tell – what’s yours?


National Writing Day is led by First Story and partners across the UK.