Saturday, December 15, 2012

Why we write

NaNoWriMo is over and I kind of miss it.

Totally glad it is gone. The rest of my life can gear up for the holidays and deal with things that went ignored. I don’t have the pressure to daily crank out words no matter if the story was moving or going nowhere. I’ve been able to take a day or two off from writing without guilt.

But the story is still out there. It keeps creeping back in and the only way deal with it is to pull out the laptop and write. You can’t beat it back.

It’s a love/hate relationship. I’m not stressed to write, but I do miss the discipline of daily writing. The story is still in the development stages and it keeps nagging at me.

There have been other times in writing life when, after months on a project, it comes to a screeching halt. The writing is crap, I’m a fraud, delete the whole thing from the hard drive. I put the whole thing away and wipe my hands of it. I’m done.

Then two weeks later, I’m working on it again.

What makes us do it? Why are we so compelled to create something and manipulate it to perfection? How can joyous pleasures override the deep frustrations? To earn a living? Hardly. Except for J.K Rowling and the like, most writers report meager earnings. Is it a desire to seem clever, to be talked about, or be remembered after death. I hope that’s not what motivates me.

Is it simply to communicate or to play with language? There is something emotionally satisfying about writing. Pure pleasure comes when you turn that phrase, massaging the wording until it’s ideal, engaging in language. We feel so good when we can set obstacles for our characters and direct their path through.

Why do I write? Because I have to.

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