Age-old Question

“Why do writers write?”

So, why do they? Or should I say we? It is an age-old question, and one that doesn’t have a definitive answer, in my opinion. After all, everyone is different, so everyone’s reasons will be, too. Of course, there may be some similar reasons from writer to writer, such as “Because it’s my passion” or “Because I want to/need to share my story, my voice”; but, to me, I don’t think it really matters why anyone writes – what’s important is that they are, and that they’re happy doing it, right? Perhaps, writers keep their true reasons locked away in a dungeon that only they have the key to unlock.

I have asked myself ‘Why am I writing?’ and ‘What am I even doing?’ so many times I have lost count. I have no idea what I’m doing, and, if I’m honest, I still don’t fully understand why I’m writing. It seems that I have locked my reasons away and lost the only key, and this has resulted in me doubting myself beyond all belief, criticising myself more than anyone else possibly could. Well, at least that means critics of my book won’t faze me. The only thing I do know, however, is that I’m doing this because I have to. 

“Because you have to? Really?”

Yes.

“Why do you have to?”

I couldn’t say.

For me, writing is my duty, as ridiculous as that may sound. This may be  the reason why I am yet to feel a true sense of reward and achievement.

But I have achieved something, I know I have. How could I possibly deny it? So then, if this is so, why do I feel as though I haven’t? Why on earth did I dedicate so much time, effort and money into something I’m not getting anything out of? Many friends of mine have said to me “It’ll all be worth it” when I have my moments of crippling doubt, but every time this is said, I can’t help but sit there and think… will it? But, here I am, still doing it, despite everything. Because I have to. Maybe I’ll feel different when I’m actually holding my book in my hands, but who knows: if I haven’t felt anything as of yet, when I’m this close to being published, why would that scenario make any difference? Maybe I’ll hold it in my hands and see nothing but the product of my personal responsibility, since that’s what I seem to see my story as.

I guess my point, in a rather long-winded way, is: don’t give up. My entire writing process has been a walk through obscure darkness, but I’m still standing, aren’t I? For any fellow writers, or aspiring writers, reading this: whatever your reason for writing or wanting to write is, just go for it. Charge through a far-reaching meadow, whether it be lit by the sun or moon, and write with your heart taking the reins.

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2 responses to “Age-old Question

"What does your heart tell you?" - ToO, chpt. 32

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