Why do I write? Why do you write? Why does anyone write?
For writers, this may very well be the most frequently asked question. Not “Where did you get that idea?” or “What are you writing now?”
A simple answer, I believe, is that we love to create, to express ourselves. Why does a musician write and play music? Why does a painter paint, or a sketch artist sketch?
But there are many others too, a several of which I will explain from my own perspective. After all, not every answer is the same.
I have been read to and have been reading since a very young age; I believe, yet sadly know, this is not the case for every child, especially in this day and age when so many children have abandoned books and words and stories in favor of screens and electronics.
Some of my favorite books were The Magic Tree House series; Goosebumps; and, of course, Harry Potter. As I grew, I discovered authors like Edgar Allan Poe, H.P. Lovecraft, Neil Gaiman, and many others. Their stories were captivating and profound; there were things that I could relate to, and others I could not. But nonetheless, they made me think, they made me wonder…
What kind of story could I write? Could I write?
The answer was: I could write; I can write; I do write; and I will continue writing for the rest of my life. I write the stories that excite me as much as reading Harry Potter excited me; the stories that force me to think about life and death the way that Poe challenged me to do.
I write because I have ideas swimming in my head, some in pieces, others relatively whole.
I write because I want to control and be controlled by the story.
I write because it’s nice to meet new people.
I write to bring the demons and the angels and the gods inside my often-times-too-full-of-nonsense mind to life.
Because I want to introduce them to the people of the world.
Creating worlds is fun. It exercises the mind and challenges me to think outside the box.
It also allows me to escape-to flee reality in favor of an alternate universe, where friends both new and old are waiting to converse; where I might frolic with elves and nymphs, trade sword strikes with a knight, and vanquish demons come to eat the world.
Writing-creating worlds-provides me with the means to escape and to create an escape for the times when real life seems a bit too much; overwhelming and saddening. Boring.
Writing is the means through which I voice my irritation and frustration with the world, transposing issues into obstacles of fiction I could write my characters through.
Fictional worlds are the places I go to when my fingers hit the keyboard, when my pen or pencil scratches paper…when my eyelids bring the darkness to my eyes.
I write to bring myself and others solace.
I write because I want to. I write because I need to.
Because I love to.
I write because I think; because it helps me think; because it lets me think.
I write because it’s all I know.
Without it, I’d be lost.