Why do you want to be a writer?

I was reading a book about writing a novel* a few minutes ago. The author challenged her readers to write a simple one sentence statement: “Why do you want to write a novel?” This started a train of thoughts in my mind about the whole concept of why I am a writer – a much broader theme than that proposed by the author of that book.

Why do you want to be a writer?

I assume you are reading this blog and this post specifically because you are interested in writing. Perhaps you are looking for hints and ideas for writing – I’ve written plenty of those over the years – just go to the contents section in the sidebar. Whatever your motivation for wanting to be a writer, there are some common themes amongst would-be writers. These could include:

  1. Enjoyment: many people write purely because they enjoy the process of writing.
  2. Creativity: most writers love the creative aspects of writing, carving out poems or stories or ideas through their writing.
  3. Communication: there are many writers who have strong or burning opinions that they want to share with others. Communicating these ideas through their writing is very important to them.
  4. Money: Money? What money? Seriously though, professional writers are those who depend on getting paid for their words. Putting food on the table is a serious motivator for them.
  5. Fame: This is a slippery one. I do not think this is a serious reason for most people, though some might be motivated by it.

Most of the above reasons are quite valid. For me, however, there is yet another burning reason.

Because I have to write

I have to write. This is who I am. This is the way I have been created. From a very early age I have been a writer. I am a storyteller. The urge, the passion, the vision, the desire – call it what you will, but I must write. Without writing I am less of the person I am meant to be.

I must write.

*”A Novel in a Year” by Louise Doughty

Further reading:

Good writing.


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