I was thinking about why I write this morning. Writing, for one with a passion to express themselves through the written word, defines a good portion of who we are. Reading does not equate to writing, but without reading, writing for some seems almost pointless. Some of the greatest praises from a beta reader for me are, “I couldn’t put it down, I wanted to find out what happens” or “It really tugged at my heart” or “It gave me a whole new perspective.” Those phrases are what really get me going as a writer.
While it is perfectly okay to write simply for the act of writing, which can be a very private matter and can be very cathartic, sometimes revealing what one has written in those moments can touch people in a way that even our best efforts at creative writing can’t capture. I think for the writer, part of who one is must enter the story, if the story is to resonate with others, even if it is only a reaction to the writing rather than personal revelation. Does the story you are typing make you pause and think about what you just wrote in a way that evokes emotion? Does it make you stop and laugh out loud, or cause your eyes to water unexpectedly? Do you find yourself smiling while reading a scene you wrote, or empathizing with a character you have developed? Does it make you want to keep writing so that you can share the story with others? Do you wake up at night with an idea you hastily scribble down on the notepad you keep by the bed for that purpose? Do you hear someone say something and think, “That would be a great line to use in my story?” I think people write for many reasons. For me – I write because it is a part of who I am. It is a natural response to the thoughts rolling around inside of my head, having the potential to become a story that could touch the lives of others in a positive way. There are other reasons but for me, that is the most compelling. Why do you write?
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