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Why Write?

Why do you write? Or, edit or publish? I’ve never met any who say, “Oh, it’s a job. Just trying to make a buck.” Thanks to self-publishing, the traditional gatekeepers are gone and more people are making money in the writing business now than ever before. Anyone who wants to be a writer, editor or publisher already has the qualification to do so: Want.

Do it. If you are good and lucky, you will succeed. Never before has so much opportunity been right in front of so many. The gates are open. If you’re a writer, act like one. Toss your book into Amazon’s hopper of eleventy-million other books. Editor or publisher? There’s room for more. Stop acting like you just showed up to the ball to see someone else wearing your dress.

So, why do you write? I like to write because I get better at it.  it is about self defining. My writing has been a journey of self-discovery.


3 thoughts on “Why Write?

  1. mimispeike says:

    Y’know, I ask myself that all the time. I’ve labored long at this, very much doubting it will be read. I’m in a particularly difficult stretch right now, trying to link up the bulk of the (book one) story with an already written two-chapter ending, and struggling to do so in an economical fashion, when my tendency is to embroider even more, resulting in more loose ends to tie up.

    This is a lively topic over on medium.com. Many hope to make a career. Or at least a side income. Do I find the discussion amusing? I did at first, but I’m losing patience with that site. The (equivalent of) perky sound bites have begun to irritate me.

    Okay. Why do I write? I do not plan. I do not outline. I have a story to tell, and I have to figure out how it goes for my own enjoyment.

    With verse it’s a different story. That’s a game, my version of Rubik’s Cube. A challenge, that I can work on anywhere, me with my pen and my sticky notes.

    I never wanted to be a writer, and maybe I’d be better off if I’d never started. Impossible to say.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I started out writing for myself — mostly private thoughts about working through all the BS to find out who I really am. Recording moments and events that peeled back the masks and compelled me to make choices or acknowledge facts that either defined or revealed who I am or could be. Writing was integral to examining and remembering.

    Of course it was self-indulgent and overdone, and eventually led to leaving that kind of writing behind. Maybe I just didn’t need to do that anymore.

    When I started writing fiction and little anecdotes from my childhood to entertain myself and explore strange ideas that sprang from life and the world around me, I enjoyed it. I wanted to be really good at it. I still do. I discovered the truth behind “practice makes perfect” is that “practice makes better”, and an essential part of that is feedback from thoughtful, honest people. So writing became an opening of portions of the inner self I had so deliberately guarded, and, I think, not only defines me, but reveals me.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Perry Palin says:

    Why do I write? Self-analysis is tricky and unreliable, but here goes.

    I write because it is a place where I can make the decisions, good or bad, without someone kibitzing and without affecting someone else’s life. It is a retreat from what happens in the real world. When I am working on a story I am living in the story for days and weeks and it’s a joy.

    I write because it is a craft where I know I can always improve. It’s a place to learn and grow, and I like that.

    In earlier years writing was a therapeutic relief from social and work responsibilities. I write now because it is something I have done for a long time. I’m writing less, perhaps because I don’t need the therapy of it, but it is still a joy.

    Some of my favorite stories will never be submitted anywhere, and some of my favorite stories will never be finished. These are things that, while not necessarily hidden, I don’t care to share.

    I don’t have a strong need for affirmation from others. But I’d be wrong if I said I didn’t want to see something published, if only to tell myself that I could do it. I’ve had a small but appreciative audience. I haven’t worked hard to grow my readership. When my first short story collection was coming out my publisher told me that I probably wouldn’t make much money with the book but I would make some friends. That is just what happened, and that was nice, even for a hermit like me.

    Liked by 1 person

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