Tuesday, May 17, 2011
I’m often asked why I write and lately I have to say, I’ve been in a quandary about that. We write for many and varied reasons. Some are quick to say they simply love writing. Not a thing wrong with that. You love something, you do it. Right? That’s a no-brainer. Others write for a bit of extra income and some pen stories to be a part of ‘the writing world’ of authors, readers, publishers etc. These are all valid and sound reasons for wanting the life of an author.
Lately though I’ve been wondering exactly why I do what I do and each time I’ve asked myself that question I can’t think of an answer. Sad isn't it? Once upon a time I loved to write and craft a story that ate away at me until I could do nothing else but get it down. I was passionate about learning my craft. Driven. Ambitious. Dying to ‘get there’. When I became published and had reached that ultimate goal, I loved the world…meeting other authors and developing friendships with women who were like me yet, each very different from me, too. They are women who have enriched my life and I simply can’t imagine a day not talking with them.
So why the funk? Maybe I needed to have a little chat in the mirror with Jack Handey from the old Saturday Night Live sketch “Deep Thoughts” but in the end, a simple conversation with my daughter started me thinking and suddenly I KNEW why I wrote and why I’ve chosen to live this life.
Last night I had an epiphany.
My twenty-year old picked up a beautiful notebook I’d been given as a gift from an author friend. You know the kind…lovely and filled with blank pages just waiting to be filled. She said…Mom, I need one of these. Did you keep a journal? Yes, I told her, I wrote my deepest thoughts for years. Even when I was your age. She said…can we go tomorrow and get one for me? Sure, I said, not a problem. It’s good to write out your feelings. Sometimes it makes things more clear, ya know?
So as she sat near me while I worked at my desk, I noticed the intense look of concentration on her face as she typed into her own laptop. Of course, I knew what she was doing and in a moment of clarity I remembered again why I actually DO love to write. Even though a fictional story is, well…fictional…there is always a grain of truth to be found, isn’t there? I realized in that rare moment that I am constantly searching for answers to why people (even fictional ones) behave the way they do, say the things they say, and how they learn to accept and love. Yeah, it might sound kind of goofy to say that I am a truth seeker but I really believe that’s what motivates me to write a story.
What a relief to finally know.