Saturday, March 25, 2006

Why do we write?

My partner expressed disatisfaction (not for the first time) at my retreat to this computer to capture an idea before it turned illusive and it started me thinking.

Writing is the loneliest profession I've ever experienced. I spend days sitting here, intolerant of interruptions, focused on creatures that have no existience outside my mind and, hopefully, the printed page. Every other task I've undertaken required interaction with others. Why am I doing this now?

If it's the search for fame, why do writers use pen names? Fortune may come to a lucky few, but most of us labor for the satisfaction of bringing the stories into existence. I suppose some write out of loneliness, searching for congenial company, revisiting their past perhaps, but that doesn't explain the number of writers out there, nor even the ones who come to my classes at night in spite of inclement weather and busy lives.

The buzz that comes from a completed manuscript, a published book, a royalty payment(which is usualy just enough to pay for a good dinner for two) is intense, but I've experienced others just as intense and was paid better for them.

In the end, I suspect my answer will be the same as every other writer worth their salt.

Because I must!
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