If you are reading this blog, it’s likely because you are a writer (or at least are moving in that direction). Why do you write? What motivates you? What causes you to put in the work when other people or pursuits beckon?
If the answer is fame, money, or easy work, you hold unrealistic expectations. While it is possible to garner a bit of recognition or earn some money, these will not likely happen in abundance. Only a fortunate few realize these outcomes. As for writing being an easy job, that is far from true. Writing requires hard work, dogged determination, and sacrifice.
Being a writer is a difficult choice: dealing with isolation, people who misunderstand, rejection, disappointment, and fatigue. Why then, do we write? Though the reasons vary, they usually boil down to having a message we feel we must share, an idea that will explode if we don’t let it out. It’s critical we identify our specific motivation behind this.
It is, then, an inner drive that forces us to write. It’s important we embrace this. If we write but don’t know why, we will surely give up when roadblocks derail us, criticism deflates us, and frustration discourages us.
But if we know why we write, if we fully understand our provocation, then these threats will not thwart our progress. We will persist; we will prevail. Though there may be momentary hiccups along the way, nothing will prevent us from the work we know we must do.
If you understand why you write, great! If you aren’t sure, spend some time to discover the reason; uncover your inner angst or personal unction that fuels your writing. Then when our work is attacked, be it from the outside or within, we can confidently push through because we know why we write.
Why do you write? If you’re not sure, what steps will you take to discover why?
Peter DeHaan is an author, publisher, and editor. He gives back to the writing community through this blog. Get insider info from his monthly newsletter. Sign up today!