40 Reasons Why I Write

This morning Marisa shared her own reasons for writing and pointed back to the challenge that Bryan Hutchinson at Positive Writer started. I thought it would be a great exercise for me to sit down and contemplate why I write, so I minimized Marisa’s post and didn’t read any further so I could go into my own list without any other influences and share it here.

Here we go. Forty reasons why I write.

  1. It comes naturally to me.
  2. I love stories.
  3. I believe I was born for it. This is the thing I have to give the world.
  4. It gives me a sense of freedom.
  5. I feel accomplished when a story is done.
  6. I feel frustrated, but inspired to work through it, when I am stuck in a story.
  7. To illuminate truth and beauty.
  8. Honestly? Because I have a deadline.
  9. I see stories everywhere.
  10. The mundane interests me because I feel like there is so much beneath the surface–this is what I want to share. Life and value in people/places/things that so much of the world forgets.
  11. It was one of the first things I realized I could do on my own.
  12. There is history to be recorded.
  13. I believe every voice has value.
  14. I want to be heard.
  15. I want to be appreciated.
  16. I would like to be famous for something and singing the B.C. Clark jingle didn’t work.
  17. I have been writing, or trying to, for as long as I can remember.
  18. As a child I wanted to read and practicing writing improved my reading.
  19. There were stories in my head from a young age and I wanted to put them on paper.
  20. I had a lot of notebooks.
  21. Writing opened the door to more complex, critical thinking.
  22. I communicate better through written words than speaking face to face.
  23. I feel most myself when I am writing.
  24. I like the community that surrounds it.
  25. It is rather solitary, but through writing groups I have learned a lot. Including which writing groups not to join.
  26. I love complex sentences.
  27. I feel like it’s a skill not so many people have anymore, for the most part because they don’t exercise it.
  28. My first kindergarten memory is the inflammation that turned into a callus on my middle finger. My teacher said it would go away when I wrote more. Twenty-seven years later, it’s still a little callused.
  29. I’m paid to write.
  30. I kept an almost daily journal for most of my life.
  31. Writing got me through rough times.
  32. Journaling was a door into more serious writing.
  33. People generally left me alone when I was writing (brothers, annoying boys sitting near me at school).
  34. I’m good at it.
  35. It’s something I own.
  36. I thrived on praise, and probably still do a little, and hearing my teachers compliment this skill was the encouragement I needed.
  37. I “told stories” when I was a kid. Only sometimes I framed them like they were real and wouldn’t say until the end that I had made it up. Writing things down instead of telling them meant I didn’t get in trouble for lying.
  38. My favorite book heroines were writers.
  39. Anne Shirley Blythe. Yes, she gets her own number on this list.
  40. I want to leave a mark.

2 Comments

  1. I relate to the deadline so much. If I’m being honest, 90% of the time, that’s why I write. Also, thriving on praise and the desire to leave a mark really hit home.

  2. I enjoyed reading your list. Like you said, it’s a good exercise to think about why you write. Maybe a little self-encouragement, too. And…did you mean to be ironic on #26?

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