I don’t recommend living life out of fear, but fear is something we cannot seem to avoid. Whether we worry about climate change or something more immediate such as a personal ailment, the dangers to our well-being are real and should not be underestimated, which is why we should not wait to share our life experiences with others.
Soldiers have tried to preserve memory of wars for probably as long as we have told stories, whether oral or written; one has only to look at the writings of Sophocles for example. During World War I, Siegfried Sassoon and Robert Graves both wrote and published while commanding troops on the Western Front. After World War II and Vietnam, service members such as Randall Jarrell and Kenneth Koch, Bruce Weigl, and Yusef Komunyakaa published poems almost immediately after the end of their respective wars. In our era of blogs, websites, and Youtube, the notion of a service member publishing while deployed or in the near return from said deployment has been renewed, energized, and democratized to an extent inconceivable to our predecessors.