Tuesday, September 27, 2011
Why I Write
The idea is a question: Why do you write?
I bet if everyone talked about why they're a writer, why they write, what drives them, etc etc, then the answers would be as varied as if you asked, "What is your favorite thing in the world?" No two people could possibly answer the same, but I think that we would be able to see common threads that we relate to and it would help bring authors together in a new way.
I had the idea for this "meme", project, whatever you want to call it last night when I was in a depressives stupor. My usual escapist mediums such as gaming and TV were not helping, and the only thing that took my mind off my issues was working on my draft for a few minutes. It made me rethink the reasons why I write.
So, I'm asking you, my readers and my blogging friends, to participate with me in an introspective celebration on what it is that makes us all write. It can be any reason, and no reason would be "stupid" or "frivolous". Who knows, maybe your reason will help somebody.
Step 1: Write a blog post with the topic "Why I write". The goal is to search inside yourself for the core reasons as to why you open your notebook/Word Processor/napkin every day and put words down.
Step 2: Link back to this post somewhere in your post. It can be in the opening, the ending, in an image, whatever. The point is to direct people here so they can read everyone else's reasons.
Step 3: Link to your post in the comments below. (Note: give a bit of a teaser, such as key words, the opening sentence, etc.)
Step 4: Read the reasons from others and gain a better understanding and fellowship about what it means to be a writer/author.
Step 5: (pretty optional) Use one of the graphics below - or make your own - to link in your sidebar to the reason why you write so all your future visitors can see it too and learn more about you.
It's pretty simple. And, in the process, it's a free link for you. :) We may even be able to make new friends through our reasons.
In truth, the drive behind my writing has changed so much over the years. It started when Iwas a small child because I always had a story to tell. I also learned how to read and write very early so it came naturally to me to well, starting writing. Growing up I was very into arts of all kinds, but quickly discovered that...I was incapable of doing much with my hands. In short, I had shitty dexterity. I still do. I used to do bead work until I no longer could because it was too frustrating to always fail and take so long to do it. I used to draw, but then that talent went away as well. I used to be a skilled guitar player until my hands were just too small to do it anymore. Soon all I had left that I was artistically good at was writing. I can type at about 120-30 wpm, which is about as fast as I can think of sentences. Match made in heaven.
I honed my writing skill through my teenage and college years. My dream became making a life out of writing, whatever that meant. Writing was purely about enjoyment.
Somewhere during college...my life took a very dark turn. Without going into harsh details, I developed the deep depression that I still struggle with today and every day. I became involved with people who were poison to my well-being. The economy went bust and the pressure and stress was so high that there were days I just could not get out of bed with all of these things compounded together. I struggled to find a reason to live.
By that time most of my first drafts were done, so I went to work on them so I would have something constructive to do while taking my mind off how miserable I felt. I stayed focus on my writing and slowly, day-by-day, not only did I have something to show for myself but I also developed pride in myself for doing as well as I did even with all the other bullshit going on. Writing has never "saved my life", but it has certainly made it more bearable while I am here.
Writing is my ultimate form of escapism. In the worlds of my stories I am God, and I control every little thing that happens to the characters, to the plot, to the scenery...it is a power and control I need in my life. With my own life often at the whims of others, and not even my own happiness a certainty no matter how hard I try...I can control these other (fictional) people. I can determine who gets a happy ending and who will struggle their whole life for even a good day. In my writing the whole world, the whole universe is at stake, and at the center of it all is always a few people who have to bear the entire weight of everyone else's fear. And when they are happy or in love, even for just a couple of chapters, I can live vicariously through them.
Writing is the imaginary friend that you use to spell out your own problems and then constructively take out your anger and frustration on. And, when you really just want to pretend there's a world where people can be happy just by the simplest things, you can go to your writing world and make it happen.
I do not live for writing. I live because I am alive - it's always been that simple. But while I'm alive I need a way to deal with the dark clouds that hang over me, and writing has always been the answer. In the process I get to tell my stories and other people get to enjoy them. And, it's productive. But in the end I'm the one who benefits the most.
I write because it helps me, and there isn't much else in the world that does.
Back to you!
So now that I've spilled my soul out to all of you, I expect you to do the same ;) Let me know if you do this and be sure to come back and comment with a link so I and others can read it!
I've made some quick, simple graphics for you to use on your blog. Please save to your own server, etc. Feel free to make your own! I am not a graphic whiz, haha. But they get the job done.