Many people ask and many writers answer that proverbial ‘why write?’ question …
I’ve read many great quotes from stellar writers along similar themes, each in their own way explaining what writing is to them, and describing how they discover what they think by pouring their thoughts on pages much the same way painters spill paint on canvas.
Sometimes I wonder if those are simply rationalizations to excuse eclectic behavior or make writers appear to be ‘deep’?
For me it is keystroke-therapy. And some days I’ve wondered, of all things I’ve written – from daily columns to complex proposals, from short poems to long short stories, what am I doing and why am I doing it? Certainly not for the big bucks …
Back to therapy for a moment – for me it is writing, for someone else it might be gardening or jogging or some craft/hobby fixation, something that grabs them and holds them like vice-grip pliers every day that won’t let go until you’ve done what you were setting out to do. Except, once the flow is flowing, there is no pain of discomfort, there is no time limit or deadline and even when there is I feel like a child begging to stay up ‘just a bit longer’ at bedtime.
Of all writer explanation quotes about ‘why’ I’ve read, I’m probably fondest of this one - not because I’m a fan or because I’ve met her, but because I find it so simply and unapologetically defines this ‘why’ in me:
Writing is the only thing that when I do it, I don’t feel I should be doing something else. – Gloria Steinem