Why I Write

I had good intentions of tackling this subject on the National Day of Writing but clearly didn’t get to it until now. But I loved reading the responses on Twitter all day, which apparently over 23,000 people participated in, and the New York Times interviewed some of their own reporters. I loved the interview with Anna Quindlen, who writes some of my favorite contemporary novels (try Every Last One: A Novel or Black and Blue: A Novel if you haven’t tried her fiction before), and enjoyed being reminded of the classic “Why I Write” by Joan Didion. I also found this beautiful piece, that I’d love to model for my own personal history of writing. By now, people are chattering about their NaNoWriMo projects or making NaBloPoMo resolutions, like yours truly.

But why do we do it?  Why do we spend hours on an oft-frustrating pursuit that rarely makes us any money? Why do we write?

I write because I always have, ever since I can remember. I write because it helps me make sense of the world and my own place in it, who I am and who I want to be.  I write because there’s some part of my mind that only fully engages when I’m writing, and because I can’t imagine never feeling that again. I write because it helps me escape myself, and feel more like myself at the same time.

I write because I’m a writer, and I always will be.

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