Hey C.N. crew! I was thinking of starting up a new series here for everyone to enjoy during the weekends. Inspired by the NY Times, The Weekender is a series where I want to talk more in-depth or critically about writing, reading, current events that are writing related, etc. I hope that by posting a critical piece, it will not only be a good read but also be a post that will inspire you guys to post your thoughts and reactions. Additionally, I hope to invite guest bloggers to come over and participate. If you feel so inclined, please feel free to e-mail me or comment and we’ll go from there. I plan on posting The Weekender on Friday afternoons and have it encompass Copious Notes for three days. As for now, I hope you all enjoy this new series. Your feedback is always appreciated and encouraged.
“The writer’s duty is to keep on writing.” -William Styron
I think Styron was onto something when he wrote this. I wonder at times why we do what we do. Why do writers write? I’ve been trying to answer this question for months and I suspect that I am far from alone in this quest for answers. At times, at least for me, the drive is motivated by different things. Sometimes I can envision my work on the bookshelf at a store and it’s as clear as a picture in front of my face. At other times, the ideas and characters are screaming to get out of my brain and onto a piece of paper. Finally, yes sometimes I do think about the financial aspects to possibly not having a day-job and getting to realistically live with my craft as my income.
I think that secretly everyone wants to be famous. Everyone follows celebrities so closely and in my opinion it’s due to living vicariously through them. We want to have that Mercedes and the large house in L.A. We want to go out and be recognized. Personally, I think being an author is the best of both worlds because we get the money and the name out there, but we can still safely go out to the supermarket and not get mobbed. For me, that could be ideal.
Why do I write? I write because I have a desire to express myself creatively and the hopes that someone would actually pay money to have it. I have a drive to get my ideas out there and have them validated. We all want to be told we’re good at something. If it’s something we can create from nothing, I think that is a bigger validation than just doing good at the day-job. I also write because I know I can write better than the average person. I am not saying this to sound conceited but I do believe that my skill in writing is a cut above the rest. I believe that most of you Copious Notes readers on on-par with me or even better. I also believe you would agree that you can write better than the average person and you have a skill that most do not.
We all have drive and desire. One interesting thing that I think about is would my hand get really tired if I was conducting a book signing? Do people who autograph things use their actual signature or do they have an ‘autograph signature’? Odd things like this permeate my brain at times and I do laugh when I think of them because they are so odd. Being notable is nice but I think the fact that legitimate success is achievable by doing what we do is the ultimate goal. Again, it’s taking nothing and making it into something special and amazing.
I often think of Dan Brown sitting at a desk with a blank Word document in front of him. At some point in his life, he was just another guy surfing the ‘net and maybe even reading the AW forums to be involved. That blank document would become the Da Vinci Code and I have amazement that his great books at one point were just Word files on his computer that no one but him saw and it lived & died on this computer’s health. Did he ever lose part of his story? Did he know what he was writing would bring him lots of success?
I write because I want many things, but I also want self-satisfaction. To say that I have written a novel gives me great pride and I know this is something that most people only say they’re going to do and never do it. I’ve done it and I’m already working on the next. These accomplishments make me feel good and I hope that I can one day share them with the world.
So you tell me….. why do *you* write?