Sunday, September 25, 2011

Why I Write

There is only one true reason I write – because I have to. There are other reasons that I will list, but at the base of it all is the driving need to write, to get something down on paper or some lasting form.

I’ve thought about that a lot. Why do I have to write? Well, in part, I believe it’s to prove I exist. Sure, I can touch my face or I can see my fingers flitting over the keyboard, but that doesn’t prove there is a mind beyond those movements. The very fact that my body exists doesn’t prove that I exist. Only my thoughts, feelings and imaginings prove that there is a mind behind the movement, the physical being.

I love to see my name in print – as a byline or author credit. It’s not an ego thing, although I do derive pleasure that can only be attributed to my ego. It’s oddly like a headstone or graffiti on a bathroom wall. I was here. I am here now, but later it will prove I was here.

Writing always relieves my internal angst. I can only let go of a problem or idea if I write it down, otherwise there will be no rest. I will not sleep until I’ve done at the very least a scribbled note about the idea or issue.

With the ideas, it’s as if I’m afraid I may wake up mentally blank – a great and desperate fear of mine. For a creative, is there nothing more terrifying than the looming danger of losing one’s mind – as in Alzheimer’s?

With the troubles, it’s a matter of laying them down to rest beside me and luckily they are often solved in my sleep. The writing has saved my sanity. When I’ve teetered on the edge of despair, it was lack of writing that pushed me over.

I’m a perpetually cheerful person, so I’m surprised at the darkness this post represents. But perhaps that’s why I’m able to live in the light, because writing takes away the gloom.

I also write for the pure joy of it. My heart literally soars when I've put down a phrase, paragraph or article that sings. There is no greater high for me.

So, as you see – I write because I have to.


  1. Wow, I can't believe you wrote this at a time when I'm starting to think this myself! I don't consider myself a 'writer' by any stretch of the imagination but, since I've started my blog, I can't believe how much better I feel when I finish. Thanks for the timely post!

  2. I know what you mean. Writing, everyday, is like breathing for me. I literally feel myself un-tense and breathe easier once the words pour onto the page. I think it's the equivalent of a "Runners high". Although, I never run unless I'm being chased, so I'm just guessing...LOL

  3. I write because I should, and can. I write because I'm sad when I don't. I write because it comes fairly easily and I think that we should always do what makes us easily happy. Life's too short. Do what makes you happy. I also write because others like to read what I've written, and that makes me happy. See a trend here?

  4. Your first line hooked me.
    Writing is an affliction and those who suffer from it do so gladly. Great post!
    (First post didn't work, trying again sorry if dupe)

  5. Thanks everyone for your wonderful comments. I have been away for two days and spent today catching up.

  6. I hear ya! "I write because I have to." Don't know where I'd be if I didn't have this outlet! Instead of weaving my venom into yet another brand new battle with HIM, I just spew it on the page instead. The day I can't write anymore is the day they put me in a home! Love your blog, my friend!! You're a fab writer! All the best to you...

  7. I was here. Love that, Kathy. Thanks for expressing so well what many of us feel about writing!