Why?

The question surfaced again over the holiday weekend. At a small gathering, I got reacquainted with a former teaching colleague. It had probably been 10 years since we last talked. The conversation eventually centered around “What have you been up to the last few years?”

I told her that for the past 2 1/2 years I have been writing, editing, and rewriting a middle grade story in my spare time She looked at me with her eyes widening and said, “The same one?” I shook my head and she laughed before saying, “Why? I could never stick to something like that for so long.”

I told her the path to publishing is a longer road than writing your initial draft. It is full of nights and mornings of rewrites, waiting weeks, sometimes months for critiques to come back, and lots of soul searching … Am I telling this story the best way possible?

She was impressed with my ability to stick to this project, but the conversation shifted to why do people write for a living or even a part time pursuit? Her answer was to publish and make money. I couldn’t disagree more with that being the main reason.

I write because I enjoy the writing process and have something to say. I like to watch as a normal paragraph gets changed and is transformed into words that demand to be noticed. There’s nothing better than a well told story. Sure, it is thrilling to hear comments from critiquers that something touched them in an emotional or humorous way and I do want my story to be read … but the process of reaching that plateau of excellence is very fulfilling, too. I was born to write, but the process of writing a novel has made me a writer.

Here is what others are saying about why they write:

BERNARD MACLAVERTY

FINDING MY VOICE

WHY DO WE WRITE?

CHRISTIAN WRITING CORNER

And I especially like this last one: WHY DO I WRITE?

 

About Greg Pattridge

Climbing another mountain...writing middle grade novels.
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2 Responses to Why?

  1. Jodi says:

    Thanks for the mention! I’m glad you liked it. I agree, there’s nothing more magical than watching something you’ve written go from ordinary to extrordinary.

  2. C.R. Mooney says:

    Thanks for the link-back (CWC), and I’ve been working on a project for several years as well. Most of my issue is making time to write though.

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