Last week Jeff Goins (the dude who wrote the foreword for my book), posted something deceptively simple and quite thought provoking, “Why I Write”. In his post he talked about, you guessed it – Why he writes.
Jeff ended his post with an invitation to his readers to share why they write in the comments. I typed off an answer, but I soon realized there was so much more to it and suddenly I found myself going deep.
When the rest of my answer came to me, I was floored. I have a feeling that a lot of writers, and other creative types for that matter, will find themselves identifying with the rest of my answer.
Before I read Jeff’s post my answer was clear to me. I write because it helps me understand myself and my thoughts better. Writing is cathartic.
I had stopped for a decade and only restarted writing as a therapeutic exercise which resulted in my first book, One Boy’s Struggle. However, the reasons I write have long since evolved.
The fact is, as a writer, I have something to say and I need to say it in writing.
(If this is true for you, how about clicking here to tweet it.)
I certainly have something to say, but even that doesn’t encompass all of why I write.
So I made a I Write Because list:
(I made them all tweetable in case you identify with any and want to share.)
I write because I believe what I have to say matters. (Tweet)
I write because I feel better about myself when I’m doing it. (Tweet)
I write because it’s what I was born to do. (Tweet)
I write to give clarity to my thoughts. (Tweet)
I write to share what I have learned. (Tweet)
I write to make a difference. (Tweet)
I write to change things. (Tweet)
I write to overcome my doubts. (Tweet)
I write because it’s a kind of magic. (Tweet)
I write to encourage. (Tweet)
I Write to inspire. (Tweet)
I write to motivate. (Tweet)
I write to remember. (Tweet)
All of these are great reasons, but there’s something more, something that keeps pushing me to stretch beyond my limitations, beyond my failures and ultimately, beyond my doubts.
Here’s the comment I left on Jeff’s post:
I write because it makes me feel special in some small way. I don’t have a lot to say, but when I say something I want it to be meaningful and memorable. So instead of saying it, I write it, and guess what, that’s what writers do. That’s special. At least, I think it is.
On the surface that’s a straightforward and honest answer. It’s the essence of what I was thinking at the time, but it was incomplete.
Writing does make me feel special. When I write something and share it, I feel as though I am creating a legacy, something that will be part of this world long after I am gone. If I am truly fortunate, I’ll inspire others to write and publish, and leave their thoughts as a legacy for ages to come, too.
I write to be remembered. (Tweet)
That’s why I try to make everything I write as meaningful and memorable as possible.
I write to do something REMARKABLE with my life. (Tweet)
I believe if you think about it you’ll find that you have reasons far more profound than you may have realized for what you do. That’s what happened to me. And let me be honest, it kind of changes you when you take in the reasons that lead you to do what you do, be it writing, painting, or creating any type of art.
The change came to me as a recognition of the feeling I’ve always had that I must do something bigger than myself. But until now, I never admitted that that’s what I am trying to do.
And that brings up yet another truth:
You have to give your all to do something bigger than yourself if you want to breakthrough the limitations and doubts that hold you back from doing your best work.
To leave no legacy scares me to death.
I want to do something special with my time here on earth. I write to become part of history. Obviously, there are other ways to create a meaningful legacy, but writing is how I want to do it.
Then again, maybe it just feels good to help others through my writing.
Ah, there’s never a simple answer, is there? There rarely ever is for doing something worthwhile. I do know one thing for certain, it’s worth it.
What about you? Why do you write? Share in the comments.
I asked fellow bloggers why they write and they all had great reasons. You can check out their answers via the below links.
If you’ve blogged about why you write, feel free to share your link in the below widget and your link will show up here: