Drumroll, please: The Top Ten Reasons I Love Writing
Let’s face it – you have to really love writing to keep doing it day after day, even on the days when it’s hard, even on the days when you’ve lost all hope of ever figuring out your protagonist’s purpose, where your tangled plot is going, or the inner workings of the mercurial labyrinth that is modern publishing. You have to burn with a heartfelt, almost zealous desire to create something out of nothing. This is what it takes if you’re going to keep banging your head against the keyboard day after day – toiling on blog posts, essays, short stories, poems, or whichever literary form you choose.
“Normal” people don’t write. Crazy people write. But, we’re crazy in all the best ways.
I have explored the question of why we write a few times in posts like What Your Writing Is Missing and How to Get It, Why We Write – A Novel Answer, and earlier this year in a Weekend Edition about Why You Write. But today, I just want to talk about all the aspects of writing that make me smile, squeal with delight, and geek out.
Ready? Here goes …
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Number Ten: Writing gives me an excuse to explore.
In the post Your Writer’s Mind, I wrote, “Writers are like aliens. We explore and dissect, question and document. We study the ways of the human heart and soul with a probing and unflinching eye. The writer’s mind is a many-faceted marvel that defies logic in order to create magic, all within the constraints of twenty-six letters and a few punctuation marks.”
I love the way writing invites me to follow my curiosity, bend the laws of reality, and ask “What if …?” Being a writer gives you permission to ask all kinds of otherwise awkward and nosy questions, all in the name of The Story. It’s like having a press pass to Life.
Number Nine: Writing helps me refine my thoughts.
I believe it was Joan Didion who said, “I don’t know what I think until I write it down.” I totally get that. Writing gives me a reason for thinking deep thoughts, and a process with which to take them apart and put them back together again. I do a lot of “mulling” and “noodling” when I write, which gives me the chance to consider different perspectives, angles, and possibilities. Ultimately, all this going back and forth to polish my initial idea leads me to a place where I have a lot more clarity about what I’m trying to say than when I started out.
Number Eight: Writing gives me time to myself.
I thank my mother for my ability to enjoy spending time with myself. She always encouraged my sister and I to embrace solitude and learn how to be comfortable in our own company. Growing up, I often spent the majority of my day on my own, reading, drawing, building things, or just playing outside with my dog. As an adult, it feels like I have much less alone time, but writing provides a little haven to which I can retreat. Even if I’m sitting in a crowded cafe, the fact that I am immersed in a world of my own creation causes the world around me to fade into the background, leaving me alone with my thoughts. It’s lovely.
Number Seven: Writing is a satisfying creative outlet.
Creative expression is not an optional part of life. It’s mandatory. It’s part of being human. The form of expression we choose can be pretty much anything – writing, painting, dancing, cooking, arranging flowers, styling our outfits – but self-expression is something each of us needs.
Writing gives me the chance to stretch my imagination, create whole worlds, imagine life as someone (or something!) else, and unpack endless possibilities. In short, writing is PLAY. It’s fun. It’s the grown-up version of the playacting I used to do as a kid using dolls, action figures, or even role playing. (My dad still has photos of me and my friend, Anya, dressed as Amazon warriors complete with wooden daggers and leather headbands. We were committed to our characters.)
Number Six: Writing helps me connect with others.
First and foremost, writing helps me connect with the world around me and my ideas about that world. As a writer, I am constantly observing life, other people, natural phenomena, pretty much everything. But, ultimately, I put my writing out into the world, and in this way invite connection with other people. Whether I’m publishing a blog post here on Live to Write – Write to Live, a column in my local paper, or an article in a magazine, my words are like synapses firing between individual minds. It never ceases to thrill me when someone leaves a comment that makes me look at my topic in a whole new light. I’m always delighted when a neighbor tells me how much they enjoyed my column. Putting my words out in the world can be a little scary sometimes, but I’m willing to push past the fear for the chance to connect with another human being, to create a moment of shared experience that makes my world that much easier to understand.
Number Five: Writing lets me geek out on process and over-indulge my notebook habit.
Though I love my creative side, I also have a very Type-A, process-oriented, organization-junkie side. I love outlines, mind maps, and character dossiers. I love sticky notes, color coding, and plot time lines. I love brainstorming, researching, and file naming conventions. I love cool software like Scrivener. Writing lets me play with all these geek toys and processes in the name of art. What could be better?
And then there are all the notebooks, pens, highlighters, and other writerly materials. Did I mention notebooks? I am a sucker for all writing-related goods. I’ve been reading the Levenger catalog from cover to cover for as long as I can remember, and I can’t go to a Staples without picking up a half dozen new notebooks. I have a collection of Moleskine and similar notebooks that I’ve never written in because I don’t want to mess them up. I have favorite pens that I use every day, and others that I hide in case my daughter gets any ideas about “borrowing” them. I lust over old typewriters and letterpress trays. I adore writing-themed mugs, tote bags, and t-shirts. I love pretty much any writing paraphernalia.
Number Four: Writing keeps my mind sharp and challenges me.
No matter how long you live or how hard you study, you will never know all there is to know about writing. This makes me happy. I love that, with writing, I am always learning something new. I am discovering new tools and techniques, learning about other writers, figuring out how story works. I believe that learning keeps us young at heart by keeping us curious and engaged in life. There are so many nuances to writing that I could live to be six-hundred-years-old and still have plenty more to learn.
On a related note, writing constantly challenges me both intellectually and emotionally. Learning and practicing the writing craft is a pursuit that engages my mind in every possible way. It’s like a multi-level puzzle where each layer solved reveals another, more involved layer. Emotionally, writing challenges me to be brave, to put my thoughts and ideas out into the world even though it might make me feel vulnerable.
Number Three: Writing isn’t just an activity, it’s a community.
Though I think I’ll always feel like a bit of a newbie when it comes to being part of the writing community, there’s no denying that writers are a breed unto themselves, and that – as such – we tend to flock together. Blogs, podcasts, Facebook groups, LinkedIn groups, classes, conferences, readings, writing groups, book clubs, and so on … we writers have an entire network of writing-related communities and hang outs, both digital and “real world.” As I said in a previous weekend edition – You Are Not Alone when you’re a writer … ever. There’s a whole world community of other writers out there who have your back and love all the same geeky writer things you do.
Number Two: Writing requires reading – lots and lots of reading.
Books, books, and MORE books!!!! Stephen King famously said, “If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write. Simple as that.” He also said, “If you want to be a writer you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.” And, finally, I recently came across this little gem (also attributed to Mr. King), “When all else fails, give up and go to the library.”
I’m not a big fan of horror, but I kind of love Stephen King.
I love writing because it not only inspires me to read, it also gives me the liberty to consider reading part of my writing work. Each time I read something, I learn something about writing. Whether what I’m reading is setting a good example or serving as a warning, I learn. From vocabulary to voice, story structure to cadence, characterization to character arc, each and every piece of writing I read has something to teach me. Plus, reading is just FUN! It entertains me. It’s an escape from the world that also manages to deepen my connection to the world. Reading helps me process my own thoughts and beliefs while making me feel less alone. Reading brings me dozens of friends in the form of characters in the stories I read as well as the real-life friends who love the same stories I do.
And, the Number One Reason I love writing: Writing makes me more “me.”
For all the reasons I’ve listed above, writing is a practice that puts me in touch with the Real Me. It pulls away the layers of “otherness” that have built up as I’ve grown up. It gets at the core of who I am and helps me define the person I want to be. Over the years, your writing practice creates a roadmap to personal authenticity. It gives you the perspective and insights you need to be the best, most true version of yourself possible.
Last week, I read Robert Beatty’s book, Serafina and the Black Cloak. I picked this middle grade novel up from the library after seeing it advertised repeatedly in the Faerie Magazine email newsletter. I initially borrowed it on behalf of my daughter, but – who was I kidding? – I eventually caved in and read it myself.
It was a quick read, but an enjoyable one. It’s a story I would have loved when I was my daughter’s age. The protagonist is a feisty young girl with a mysterious past, the setting is a beautiful estate surrounded by a foreboding but inviting forest, and there’s a good balance of danger and magic.
I still hope my daughter will read this, so we can compare notes. I’m also keeping an eye out for the second book in what promises to be at least a trilogy, if not a series, and even possibly a movie (the book was published by Disney/Hyperion after all).
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Thanks to a reader who shared the link to this piece in a comment (thanks, confusedandcuriouswriter!), I also read a Brain Pickings piece called How to Save Your Soul: Willa Cather on Productivity vs. Creativity, Selling Out, and The Life-Changing Advice That Made Her a Writer.
The essay includes excerpts from a correspondence between Cather and her friend and mentor, the writer Sarah Jewett. In the letters, Jewett advises Cather to extricate herself from the bonds of her corporate job as the managing editor of McClure’s Magazine, a post that earned Cather a good salary and industry respect, but which did not nurture or advance her writing career.
Ultimately, Cather did leave McClure’s, and went on to write twelve novels, six short story collections, two editions of her poetry collection, and nine non-fiction works. Her stories about pioneer life on the plains have been compared to works by Hemingway and Faulkner in terms of cultural and literary importance. Amazing to think that a writer who created such works and made such an impression on so many might have wasted away at a corporate job if it weren’t for the urgings of a friend and fellow artist.
And let’s not forget the blogs. Here are a few of my favorite writerly posts from this week:
- Brainstorm Questions, Not Solutions by @levib via @99u
- The Secret to My Productivity, Or: Thoughts About Luxury and Privilege by @JaneFriedman
- 48 Hours of Joseph Campbell Lectures Free Online: The Power of Myth & Storytelling via @openculture
- Want to Create Things That Matter? Be Lazy. by Cal Newport via @99u
- What Should Authors Expect to Earn? by Brooke Warner via @shewritesdotcom
Finally, a quote for the week:
Here’s to all the ways we love writing and all the ways writing loves us back. Have a great weekend & I’ll see you on the other side!
Jamie Lee Wallace Hi. I’m Jamie. I am a content marketer and branding consultant, columnist, sometime feature writer, prolific blogger, and aspiring fiction writer. I’m a mom, a student of equestrian and aerial arts (not at the same time), and a nature lover. I believe in small kindnesses, daily chocolate, and happy endings. Introduce yourself on Facebook, twitter, Instagram, or Pinterest. I don’t bite … usually.
“10” Photo Credit: woodleywonderworks via Compfight cc
91 thoughts on “Weekend Edition – Top Ten Reasons I Love Writing”
Eleven – ‘Writing is a form of therapy; sometimes I wonder how all those who do not write, compose or paint can manage to escape the madness, the melancholia, the panic fear which is inherent in the human situation.’ Auden noted: Man needs to escape as he needs food and deep sleep.’
Think of the mess you might be in if you didn’t write
Excellent quote. Excellent point. And a truth worthy of a post all its own.
Thanks for the addition!
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King, a self-admitted mediocre writer, does say the right things: read a lot and write. “Almost zealous” I don’t think, really quite cuts it. Later, King admits that he wasn’t altogether truthful when he said he doesn’t write on holidays. He does. He takes no days “off.” There is no break. If you’re a woodsman, you chop wood everyday because that’s what you do. It’s just what you do, that’s all.
I do not think that a writer needs to write every day, though I think most writers will do that anyway … because they want/need to. I do think, however, that a writer is “writing” even when he or she is away from pen and keyboard. A great part of writing is done before we ever pick up these tools, as we mull over stories and ideas in our heads, even as we go through the everyday routines of our lives. In fact, I often find that my most useful insights come upon me when I am doing the most mundane tasks.
And I definitely think that we all need a break, whether we are writers, painters, dancers, or any other kind of artist. We need time to let the creative fields lie fallow, so to speak … to replenish ourselves emotionally and creatively. There is a rhythm and a cycle to creation … in life and also in art.
I actually agree with everything you say, especially having insights in the midst of “mundane tasks.” And, too, about the need to “lie fallow.” I’ve never in my life felt any problem or any dilemma during any period of “non-writing”—your accurate comment about writing anyway one isn’t writing per se, notwithstanding—and have just let such times. For that reason, I’ve never given any credence to “writer’s block.”It’s just a period of time that one doesn’t have anything left to say, that’s all. No big deal. Use up all the water in a 460′ deep well by running the hose for three hours, it has got to recover. No use trying, no use burning out the pump. No use. Let things be. Follow, as you say, cycles, and rhythms that are all around us anyway, and all well turn out pretty well, if not far better than that, in the end.
Exactly. Usually if we can manage to balance “go with the flow” with “enthusiastic pursuit” things turn out pretty awesome. 😉
yes you are right.writing makes us happy.but i wonder when people tell i love writing but i hate reading.
I’m afraid I’m one of the people who cocks her head like a confused dog if she hears someone say that they hate reading. I love it so much that I cannot fathom not loving it. Perhaps you just haven’t found the right kinds of stories yet. Maybe they are waiting out there for you.
my dear jamie i love reading.i have spend nearly a good portion of my life reading.my daddy has declared if i read any more books he will disinherit me.so i sneak out at night to read.i loved ur post above all.
Good to hear. If there’s anything worth sneaking out for – it’s a good book!
I have a bit of a stutter, so when I was a child writing was a way for me to express myself in ways that I couldn’t verbally. Now, it is such a joyous part of my life, I can’t imagine going a day without writing.
That’s so interesting, Patt.
I didn’t have a stutter, but I was very shy as a child and a young adult. I often retreated to the written word when faced with difficult situations and conversations. I was much more comfortable expressing myself in writing than by speaking. I’m older and bolder now, so I do not need write down my feelings as much, but I still often do, for my own exploration.
Reblogged this on Iconography ♠ Incomplete and commented:
One of the best articles I read today. It does frame that something into purpose. This was just amazing 😀
Missed ya, Jamie, but I back saving, savoring and sharing all your articles! #HUGSS
So happy to hear from you, Kitto. I’ve missed you, too.
Hope you are well and finding islands of calm and reverie amidst the holiday/end-of-year chaos.
I love writing because it enables me to write witty blog comments…
Again, you make me laugh, Andrew.
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I look forward to reading your posts. Always. I have found such freedom in releasing my thoughts in hopes of connecting with others. I have Crohn’s disease. Chronic illness can be restricting in so many ways. Through writing, I’ve discovered how much this illness teaches me about compassion, the power of vulnerability and the strength that exists in the midst of pain. Thank you for the way you so eloquently share your words. Every time.
Thank you, Amelia. I know only a little about Crohn’s, but enough to know that it an illness that affects many areas of your life. I am glad that writing gives you a way to explore and elevate the good affects – the way it can, as you said, teach about compassion, vulnerability, and strength. I have experienced the power of writing to draw out previously unseen aspects of a situation. It can give you a whole new way to look at things.
Thanks for being here. It’s my pleasure.
This is the first post if yours I have readread I would really want to thank you. Recently, I had been pondering over the idea of writing as my profession and you just helped strengthen my reasons in support of my love for writing. Thank you! 💜 Happy reading and writing 💜
Welcome, and thanks for being here. 🙂
I am delighted if reading this post has helped strengthen your love of writing, and I hope that you enjoy the journey you’re on.
Happy reading and writing to you, too!
*read and I
You are so right! You made some good points. Writing helps you to get to know yourself, explore new things, connect with likeminded people, help others to make new thoughts.. It’s just all I wanna do.
It’s interesting that the order you listed the ways writing helps you is a likely order for how a writer’s relationship with writing evolves – you begin writing as way to get to know yourself, and then writing helps you explore new things and eventually connect with like-minded people, and – ultimately – if you choose, your writing may inspire new thoughts in others.
I’m glad I’m not the only one who buys gorgeous notebooks and then refuses to write in them because it will spoil them… but I decided it was silly so I made myself stop. I haven’t yet managed to make myself write in the ones I have, but I’m working on it 🙂
I also love writing paraphernalia, I have more antique inkwells and pen stands than I need… but they are so nice! I got a lovely art nouveau one for Christmas which I am not allowing myself to unwrap until the day.
I just resisted buying a new set of notebooks yesterday while I was out shopping for holiday gifts. They were lovely, but I knew that I would refuse to write in them, so I decided to just buy more of my favorite spiral notebooks from Staples. They are cheap and basic, and I have NO problem writing in them. 😉
Inkwells can be so pretty. That’s one thing I haven’t bought, but I love to see the antique ones. Plus, I’ve always wanted to learn calligraphy, so maybe that’ll be my excuse to buy one …
Thanks for coming by. Nice to see you!
I used to do calligraphy, I keep wondering if I might take it up again…
I keep eyeing up online calligraphy courses … maybe in January.
I have only one reason: I love writing because I don’t know any better.
And what a mischievous reason that is. 😉
When I was young, in elementary school, my favorite time was when we had to write stories for language arts. It was, and still is, my greatest passion, next to drawing of course. Writing allows me to fully articulate what I want to say. My mouth will stammer and falter, but my fingers know what my brain wants to say. Writing allows me to focus and block out any negativity that has occurred that day. Writing is my soul, reading is my soul, it is my entire being. It’s an art form, and a drug.
And if I can find a sweatshirt with a typewriter printed on it, then I’d wear it to death!
They say that the pen is mightier than the sword, but I think it is also often used as a shield, a crystal ball, a magic wand, and an invisibility cloak. Writing can be all these things and more, depending on what the writer needs at the moment. I have also known many times when I could not speak my mind clearly, but with writing I was able to clear my head, collect my thoughts, and put into words what had previously only been a tempest in my heart. That alone, is gift enough.
And – yes! – anything with a typewriter motif is a must have! 😉
I definitely identify with points one, four and nine! If I’m unable to write something down clearly, then I’m usually forced to face the uncomfortable truth that I don’t understand something as well as I think I do. But that’s good, because it tells me what I need to improve on!
Also, writing is really challenging for me, at least when I set myself the goal of being accessible and non-technical (I work in statistics so that’s kind of a necessity!). I never expected how much hard work it would be to turn a dry subject into a story that people can relate to. I suppose blogging is a good way to practise this.
And yeah, writing lets my personality show through, although I’m still getting to the idea of sharing my thoughts with others.
Great article! 🙂
I love that you look to your ability (or lack thereof) to write about something as a way to measure your depth of understanding on a topic. It took me a long while to figure that out, but once I did it saved me hours of anguish staring at a blank screen. I first discovered this truth in the process of my work as a copywriter. It became clear to me that any time I felt “blocked” on a project, it was really just a case of not having enough knowledge or reference material to move confidently forward. Simple, really, when you think about it. You need to have the input before you can create the output. Funny how often we expect to be able to create something from nothing. Yes, as writers we can create whole worlds, but those worlds are always the creative culmination of our experiences, knowledge, and research. Even when we “make them up,” the inspirations that guide us are am amalgamation of everything we’ve done, seen, heard, read, etc. The more we know, the easier it is to write.
Duuuuude good tips for sure, but my favorite and probably the one I can identify with most was Number One…and Number 11 in the comments section. 🙂 it’s definitely therapeutic and definitely makes me feel more like me 🙂
I agree – #11 is a great addition (and something I am surprised I left out!).
My Morning Pages practice is in large part a therapeutic way to start my day – a brain dump of all the flotsam and jetsam that is clouding my mind. Plus, I’ve often used it as a place to vent anger, frustration, or annoyance as well as a place to confess fears, regrets, and doubts. All the dark and scary bits of me come out on those pages so that I can move ahead into my day a little less encumbered. It’s a life saver.
I didn’t even thought a reason before this but, wow, I didn’t knew that there could be more reasons. Here is my reason “I write because I can make a thread and give a platform to my thoughts. Uniquely, is filled in writing and we can show our character our image with writing”. I loved your reasons.
I like the image of writing as a thread that, perhaps, stitches your thoughts together into a platform (or maybe a boat?) upon which you exist. So interesting.
Thanks for the add & for being here. 🙂
You are welcome. I wonder how you observe things so easily!
I love a good visual metaphor! 😉
Jamie, I love all of the reasons mentioned in this blog. I am going to bookmark this page for days when I don’t feel like it and my brain keeps convincing me to not write. :P. For me, #1 was the best. I started writing humour when I didn’t know that I had it in me. And surely, that part of me has grown more and more. Now, looking at things from a humourous perspective has become part of me. Thanks for writing this post. I am sure many would benefit from it, especially when they start having doubts about writing.
I love being bookmarked! 🙂
And I find your story of writing humor so interesting because it sounds like a case where, instead of the writer shaping the writing, the writing shaped the writer. At least, in some part. The fact that your writing practice has changed your day-to-day perspective is such a great example of the transformative power of writing. Very cool.
Thanks for sharing that & for being here.
Thanks Jamie. 🙂
The truest reasons in the most expressive ways………….m sure every word in the article written above is straight from the heart
Yes – a few from the head, but mostly from the heart. 🙂
Told ya ;)….
I love your blogs and so look forward to the end of the week to read the words of wisdom you will be sharing. Every one of your blogs embody your passion for writing as well as contain the reflections and deep thinking you have engaged in before putting fingers to keyboard. Thanks for your very uplifting blogs and whatever you do, DON’T STOP!
Thank you for such kind words of encouragement, Angelique.
I am grateful to have this space where I can share my random reflections and sometimes half-formed ideas. Though I do spend time thinking through these topics before I sit to write, I never feel really prepared to tackle them. I always feel a bit like I’m shooting from the hip, as they say, but I don’t let that hold me back. Better done than perfect.
To know that my words uplift in even a small way is the best reward I could ask for, not so much because that means I’ve been heard, but more because it means there’s someone else out there who feels the way I do. What a nice gift that is!
I write primarily because I need to – it gives me a drive where sometimes I find it lacking. My mind is a treacherous place with torturous thoughts which seem intent upon convincing me that nothing is worth the effort, that every action is redundant because it will inevitably fall to memory and crumble to dust, consumed by time – depressing, right? A couple of years ago I had been considering dropping from college because I couldn’t bear the monotony of it, the repetitive lectures which lacked challenge and did not stimulate me as they once had. I began writing in the evenings after college to occupy my mind and offer challenge to my creativity – now I have a degree and a ridiculously long novel! Writing is wondrous because I create something and supply meaning to it, but also because it can simultaneously supply me with meaning and motive.
Thank you for your post – it encouraged me to be reflective and managed to cheer me up in the midst of a dark patch.
I’m sorry to hear you hit a dark patch, but happy to know that this post helped to cheer you up.
I have some experience with feelings like the ones you describe. As early as the sixth grade (and then on and off again throughout my life) I have been subject to intermittent thoughts about the futility of our actions. Back in the sixth grade I wrote an essay about my “Why Complex” – about my obsession with asking why we assume we have to do things a certain way – graduate high school, go to college, get a job, get married, have 2.5 kids, etc. It terrified me, and left me feeling hollow … like, as you said, “What’s the point? Is this all there is?”
Art, including writing, is the “so what.” It’s the purpose that is uniquely ours. It’s the thing that can give us back our passion for life by opening up doors to internal and external exploration and understanding that we didn’t even realize had been previously closed to us.
This is why, even if writing is not your profession, I believe writing is such an important and valuable pursuit.
Thanks for being here & for taking the time to comment. I appreciate you sharing such personal thoughts.
I love the post. The thoughts and language used are fantastic. I especially like reason 1; it seems to get to the heart of your reason, delving into your innermost thoughts and feelings, without becoming unduly personal and mushy.
I see that you are incorporating several of Day 5’s possibilities. I mentioned past related posts in later posts (eg: yesterday’s) but will need to link back to them, among other items this week. I linked to things I was discussing instead; need to ensure I market my blog more.
Blogging is always a balance for me, between the universal and the personal. Come to think of it, my column writing teeters on that same border. Interesting. Thanks for bringing that to my attention. 🙂
I’m not sure what Day 5 refers to (sorry!), but I do recommend cross-linking between your different posts when the topic merits it. When I’m outlining a new piece, I make notes about places where I think I have an older post on the same sub-topic. This way, I can a) make sure I’m not being too repetitive (always a risk), and b) help newer readers easily find related posts that may be helpful to them.
I find that my writing often spirals around and around the same topics – touching back to similar points as I expand my thoughts. This makes it pretty easy to repurpose older content … and kind of fun, too, as I delve back into my archives and see how differently I may have been thinking a year or two ago.
Thanks for being here. 🙂
Love the whole list — so many great reasons to write!
Thanks, Kaitlin! 🙂
Hope you’re having a good holiday season!
The same to you, Jamie!
This is a great idea for a post. I might steal this idea for my next post! Love Number 2 and Number 1!
Awesome! If you do your own version, send me the link on Twitter (@suddenlyjamie) – I’d love to read it.
I write everyday as part of my job. Still, it is an inexpicably wonderful feeling when I am able to put into words exactly what I think… just like snatching it from the top of my head and making it manifest into reality.
Yes, there is something deeply satisfying about creating a written piece – plucking the idea from your head and then crafting it word-by-word into something you can share with others. Like any art, each piece you produce is a little piece of yourself made manifest in another form. Pretty cool.
Number 2, “I’m not a big fan of horror, but I kind of love Stephen King”.
It’s funny how we expressed almost identical sentiments about Stephen King a week apart. I guess what is true will be true to lots of other writers. See my post, “Reading Stephen King” dated December 5 2015 in my blog “Living The Writing”. Link – russsoh.com.
Read, and write on !
Enjoyed your post, Russ. And you’ve inspired me to maybe purchase at least one, if not two, of King’s non-fiction books. I’ve never read “On Writing,” though almost every writer I know lauds it as one of the best books on the craft. And, I’d never heard of the book about the band tour – that sounds very entertaining as well.
Thanks for being here & for sharing your post. Happy writing!!
I loved this post, I couldn’t turned my eyes from these 10 amazing reasons to write. Other than my freelancing job, I try hard to find time to read, and write. This post is both, inspiring and motivational. Thanks a bunch for this amazing post! (Y)
You’re very welcome! 🙂
I know what you mean about the difficulty of finding time to read and write, but the effort is worth it every time.
Here’s hoping you are able to make some time for both despite the craziness of the holiday season.
I will for sure!
Thanks much for the words 🙂
So refreshing to hear about someone (like me) who actually enjoys their writing work. I get a bit tired of whiny writers.
We all have our dragons to battle (though, I need to come up with a new metaphor there, since I actually kind of like dragons), but I for one am grateful that I get to don my armor and wield my sword … I mean, pen. Always grateful.
I, too, love notebooks, pens, files, journals – anything in a book or office store. I have always been super organized and wanted to write, but never found the courage. Until now. My husband told me that I have spent y entire life preparing to write by reading all the books I have. So now is the time…www.journeyacres.com.
Reading is excellent preparation for writing. I’m working on a post about exactly that, actually! 😉
And no worries about comment typos. I do that all the time. Your “PS” comment made me smile.
Happy writing – glad you’re making the time!
…and I make typos on my first comment…smh. 🙂
I agree with everything you said! What is your view on AudioBooks? I love to read but I have more time to listen. The downside: I don’t get to witness the technical stuff like commas and quotation marks….
I love audio books.
Here’s a post I wrote – gosh! – four years ago about why audio books are not cheating: https://nhwn.wordpress.com/2011/11/16/audio-books-are-not-cheating/
That said, while there are many benefits to hearing a story read out loud, I agree that there are also many benefits (especially for writers) to reading words on the page. For this reason, I try to balance my reading and listening so that I get the best of both worlds!
Thanks for coming by!
Your ten reasons for writing were great. I agree with all of them. I could add one more thou. One of the reasons I write is because I will learn something new . Every time I write I am learning something.
So very true. Great addition.
I love the top reason you love writing. It actually encompasses the whole reason I enjoy writing. It’s like your re-finding yourself with every page. When I started blogging, it was to show who I really am inside and I think a lot of people write for that reason. It’s easy to lose yourself in your day to day life and I really appreciate the way you described it.
It is SO easy to lose ourselves in our day-to-day life, isn’t it? We need to take time out of that routine so that we can think bigger, deeper thoughts and learn about who we are and what we believe and which kinds of stories we really want to tell.
Thanks very much. Glad to have you here.
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I am always amused with friends say, “oh, I’m not a writer” as if we, as writers, have some magical powers. Writing is a way to process our world and what makes writers “writers” is the ability to make connections that every one of your top 10 allows us to make. In the process of processing, the real magic happens. (And the Joan Didion quote is one of my favorites.)
YES. The magic is in the process, not the outcome.
And double yes to the fact that writing is not a magical power, but a way of looking at and processing the world. There is no Writing Fairy that comes around and bonks alternate people on the head. (“You’re a writer. Not a writer. You’re a writer. Not a writer.”) Writing is a practice and a craft that can be taught, learned, and improved upon indefinitely.
Thanks for stopping by!
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Jaime, I had to chuckle when you wrote about collecting notebooks and having ones that are too good to write in in case you mess them up. I’m very much the same. I still do quite a lot of my writing by hand and find something stimulating in that process itself…of pen on paper. I write pretty much all of my blog posts straight onto my blog but tend to handwrite more of my creative work e.g. poems. This could also be because inspiration has struck suddenly and I just grab whatever pen and paper is in front of me and don’t want to lose the flow with the delays involved with firing up my computer.
Sadly, my computer is rarely off. 😉
I agree, however, about the differences between writing with pen and paper vs. writing via keyboard. I find I often have a different voice depending on the tools I’m using.
And, I also agree that sometimes pen and paper is just faster!
Here’s to not losing the flow!
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