I periodically have to remind myself why I write. Tonight is one of those occasions. It certainly is not for the money, by the way, or the fame. So, why do I write? Let me think about that question for a minute.
I write because:
1) I often express myself on paper better than through the spoken word.
2) I want to chronicle an experience, a feeling, a thought.
3) I love the way the keys on the keyboard feel underneath my fingertips.
4) I feel compelled to express myself.
5) I am lonely and want to see what’s happening inside my head.
6) I am curious and want to see what’s happening inside my head.
7) I feel outraged and need to express those feelings on the page.
8) I feel happy and need to express those feelings on the page.
9) I feel confused and need to express those feelings on the page.
10) I love the process of putting one word after another to form a thought.
11) I am a masochist.
12) I love having even one person respond to something I’ve written.
13) I nurse the secret hope that I’ll write that one fabulous essay, story, novel that will impact a whole group of people.
14) I admire the critical thinking that can come from writing.
15) I admire the storytelling process.
16) I believe that communication is the key to harmony in the world.
17) I love stories – telling them, hearing them and reading mine and those of others.
18) I hope I’ll learn something about myself by writing.
19) I have a need to make sense of the world though writing.
20) I am in love with words.
21) I am in love with grammar.
22) I am in love with the concept of connection through the written word.
23) I appreciate it when others express themselves in writing and I want to return that favor.
24) I love reading.
25) I feel connected to a larger community as a result of writing.
26) I love creating a whole fictional world through writing.
27) I amuse myself to no end by creating that fictional world full of characters.
28) I look for meaning in that imaginary world when I am engaged in novel writing.
29) I feel more tuned in and aware in this world when writing a novel, afraid I might miss some wonderful detail that begs to be included in my story.
30) I enjoy life inside my head with its wide cast of diverse characters and the problems they face.
That is certainly not a definitive list, but that’s good enough for now. I can go to bed knowing that all of this time I have spent writing has an upside. I expect I am a healthier person because writing is a critical part of my life. That is surely a plus.