Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Why Write


So, my friend and I were talking the other night. She is not a writer and wondered about the things I liked and didn't like about the business. Specifically, she asked:
What do you find to be the most challenging aspect of being a writer?  What is your greatest reward from writing?
Great question, right? Perfect, actually, for my current place on this journey.

For me, the hardest part of being a writer is maintaining the confidence necessary to continue writing, in spite of everything else.

Writing, for me, is a tough task master. She requires 100% of me if I'm going to pour onto the paper the story that was meant to be told. She requires the stamina to continually rewrite and polish, all to get at the heart of the story. Writing requires bravery if I'm going to tackle the hard emotions with authenticity, humility to keep learning the craft, and perseverance to see a project through to the end.

And all of those qualities - stamina, bravery, humility, perseverance - require an aspect of confidence. But not just run-of-mill confidence, no. I'm talking about the confidence needed to climb back up the hill no matter how many times you fall down. The confidence to remember why you do this to begin with.
I've recently fallen down that hill. And this time (yeah, this time...I tend to fall down this hill a lot), getting up was one of the hardest things I've had to do so far in my writing career. I truly did not think I would. I considered walking away from writing. Permanently. Considered myself nuts for even trying to break into some aspects of this business.

Enter my writerly friends...they helped me remember the things I love about writing. Crafting the story. Getting lost inside of some character's head a while. The freedom of creating that initial draft. The pure love of molding words on a page.

Yeah, I can't walk away. I'm hooked.

And maybe that's the best part of writing - that no matter what dark place I fall into as I try to reach my goals (and yes, writer's at ALL PLACES in the journey STILL fall into those dark places), I know, deep down inside, that I can't walk away. Not for long.
My muse will not silence.
I guess until it does, until I feel I have nothing left to say, I am here - learning to build my confidence and continue forging up the hill, one step at a time.

What about you guys? Why do you write?

10 comments:

  1. I write because I love to write, despite the fact that it's a hard path to take... people do what they love and I don't wanna give up. :)

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  2. Re: "And all of those qualities - stamina, bravery, humility, perseverance - require an aspect of confidence"

    Almost makes being a writer sound like being a patriotic soldier, kinda cool.

    I wrote when I was younger because it was an escape. I write now because it's still an escape and a good way for me to create an escape for others. I write because it's a challenge, it's fun and it's a part of who and what I am.

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  3. I write because I enjoy it so much.

    That's not to say that it's not hard work. We all know it's hard work. But even the disappointment and frustration are opportunities for learning and I'm determined to enjoy the learning, no matter how difficult it may seem.

    It's not as if I have a choice, really. :)

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  4. I <3 you for this post, Christine! You did a wonderful job of expressing what we all feel at one time or another. GREAT POST! :-)

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  5. Great attitude, and I totally agree that so much confidence is required.

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  6. That IS a fantastic question! I loved your answer, too. And I agree--it's in my blood now. It defines me. I can't imagine my life without it.

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  7. Yay, I've finally found your writing blog. How was I not following this before????

    I love your answer to this question, Christine. That's exactly how I'd answer it too. I love writing (especially fiction) too much to abandon it. :D

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  8. Wonderful, and just what I love about the writing community. They totally GET that dark place. They've been there, tasted the bitterness of it, and climbed back on their feet again. It's what keeps me going sometimes!

    But I write for the pure joy of it. Simply addicted. :)

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  9. I'm addicted, too. I write because I must. Because I have to sleep. If I don't write I get insomnia with all the stuff I have to say. Thanks for this post. I'm in the authors platform with you.

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Thanks for your input!