It’s bizarre how far off just 24 hours can seem sometimes. Like I remember trying to write last night and not feeling it, but it just feels like ages ago. I did have a little idea come to me, but I want to keep it and mess around with it a bit more, so instead I took an idea from a blog as I was catching up on my Reader here. Kristi wrote a really neat blog response to a common question anyone who writes faces and I thought I’d take a stab at it.
Why do you write?
It’s funny because earlier I came back from a break early and a co-worker was shocked when I told him it was because I hit a good stopping point in my book and if I went on I’d go past my break time. Then he asked why I liked reading, what I got out of it. And my answer at first was, “Well I love writing.”
I know that’s not how it is for everyone but my love and need for writing is very much connected to my life and need for reading. I am an only child so fictional characters were very important to my childhood and growing up. They were at times friends to me, and more often than not inspirations. They got to go on these adventures, live these really fascinating lives, and they took me away from my room in my small town from time to time.
When I got older and realized that not only could I read about characters but I could create my own… Mind. Blown. Since then I’ve constantly been creating stories, some for my favorite characters, some for my own characters, and occasionally real people that were in my life. Writing gave me an outlet to channel my over active brain and it became this sort of method to focus and calm down if ever I felt frantic. I used it as a sort of therapy tool before I even knew I needed a therapy tool, but man was it even more useful when I discovered that.
I also write because I’d love to make it something I do. So often the world tells people that writing is not a real profession to aspire to because it’s difficult and more often not fruitful than it is. Which you know…they aren’t necessarily wrong. I’ve followed enough authors from book to book to realize that writing can’t always sustain a life on just that alone. Of course it’s the dream and can be done, but the money is not why I write or still cling to my dream of writing novels for a living.
Mostly I do it to connect; to the world, to emotions and feelings, to people, to myself. Writing, wither it be fiction or poetry or just blogging/journal writing, connects me to what it means to really feel strongly and what it’s like to be human. If I am creating new characters and new worlds I am conscious of how realistic they need to be, or how un-realistic I can get if I want, and if I am working on poetry I find that I force myself to be more creative and expand my vocabulary. And naturally blogging or journal writing lets me connect with myself on a deeper level and examine parts of myself I don’t always acknowledge, and occasionally know about until that very moment.
Another reason, I think, is that I hope in some small way it brings something to others. I’ve gained so much by all the great, and even not-so-great, things I’ve read in my life and if I could given even a sliver of that to anyone else I feel really happy. Words have such power in them and to think that something I create could wield a positive thing for others is just an ultimate feeling of success.
I write because the magnetic pull towards doing it is stronger than most things for me.