Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Why Do You Write?

“Know why you want to write, why it's necessary. No one can tell you what those reasons are. But if you want to write only to be published then you will likely get discouraged and quit before that happens. An ambition for fame is not enough. The reason you write should be substantial enough that you would continue to write no matter what.” -- Amy Tan in General advice from published authors to aspiring writers.
For the opening assignment of the first online writing class I took, the students were asked to list the reasons they wanted to be a writer. The only answer of mine I remember is “because the alternative is unacceptable.”

I enjoy writing. I thrive on the process of putting a story into a tangible form and massaging it until it’s ready to send out. There are times I’d rather be doing anything else. I write something most of those days, but don't obsess over how bad the results are anymore. My goals don’t include becoming the next great writer. I’ve found my voice and am comfortable with it, and realize I may never be published in one of the “a-list” journals. And that’s okay, too. I reread my writing goals for 2009. Having a story accepted by a particular publication isn’t one of them. Maybe it will be in 2010.

1 comment:

latisha said...

well said. i spent so many years thinking about why i didnt want to write (too competitive, who cares what i have to say, too arogant, too scared, too lofty). only when i just sat down and did it, did i forget about all that crap.