Forum Friday: A Question For All Writers

Welcome to the first Forum Friday (on its test-run during the month of August) here at the Read Room. These posts are intended to create a space for conversations about process, craft, grammar, and all things writerly. Anyone can participate, and everyone is encouraged to – so grab your best writin’ cap, pull up a chair, and let’s get to business!

My first question to the writing community is the most basic of all:

Why do you write?

Answer any way you like.

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15 thoughts on “Forum Friday: A Question For All Writers

    • That’s a fantastic reason! And I think I agree…I get so absorbed in my writing that I hardly notice time passing (once I actually sit down and stop making excuses, that is. ;)) Thanks for contributing!

  1. It is an ever present question … as answers can come in any way we like, here is the link to my explanation; the best one I conjured thus far. In essence; because one can’t help it! As always your thoughts are welcome! The link: http://wp.me/p2v1s2-7a

    • AH yes, I remember that post! What a wonderful scene for capturing the way others too often perceive writers, and the way we must shrug our shoulders and simply say “I do it because I must.” Thanks, as always, Daniela, for your thoughtful response!

      • Thank you Julie,
        Have a lovely day,
        P.S. The story you ‘made’ me write (Pavel Kovac is going to America is on my blog -:))!
        Cheers!
        Daniela

  2. Why do I write? Because it’s fun, and I get a kick out of it, and I can’t help dealing with my issues by writing. It’s a part of me. ^_ ^

    • Fantastic! Fun is always a good motivator. I also think it’s fun, but there are times when it really frustrates me, too, so I’ve come to look at it more as creative problem solving. Despite blocks and other tough spots, it always feels good to overcome a challenge!

      Let me ask you this: would you do something writing-related (not fiction or poetry, but say, journalism or copywriting or company blogging, etc) for a full-time career, or do you think that would take the joy out of writing?

  3. It would depend on the company dynamics, some companies will give the writer creative rights, so whatever product I’m promoting, or whatever company, if I have that freedom, I can do that. Others are not so flexible, writing what you’re told all the time would get boring, and I would probably come to hate it, so I guess it would depend with the kind of company I’m working with.

    I used to work for a company that would do events on weekends, and the blogs and monthly newsletters would be like a recap of what happened. Those are always fun, coz you’re going around talking to people, getting opinions, sort of like a mini journalism thing. That doesn’t get boring, maybe stressing, coz of deadlines and lack of time, but it’s always inspiring.

    Journalism is like a calling. I think it would be fun, traveling, chasing the truth, but because it is so oriented to facts, for a fiction writer, things may get difficult. That’s how I think of it anyway. Journalists are speakers of truth, fiction writers choose certain truths, embellishing others, and create the most outrageous situations (ducking my head, in case of any paper balls flying at me from the crowd), so as a person who lives mostly in the fiction arena, I don’t think i could do Journalism. But, I would work for a journalist because I love doing research.

    This answer is extra long right? Question: When you’re writing, do you worry about what is hot/ trending? Or do you allow your own creative juices to flow and come up with whatever is interesting you at any particular moment?

    • Haha no, it’s great! Thank you for taking the time to respond in-depth 😀

      To answer your question, it varies. I think it’s important to write what you want to write, and that is usually my own greatest concern. If you’re writing to be READ, however, (which is ultimately why most of us play the game!) it doesn’t hurt to bear your potential audience in mind. But even that doesn’t mean you have to follow “trending” subjects and hop the Vampire or Battle-Royal train.

      I think really you can write about anything, and as long as it’s compelling to YOU it will be compelling to someone else. How about you?

      • I haven’t wanted to hop the Vampire or Battle-Royal train yet, although I do read it. Just to understand the market and the successful authors out there.

        Trend is great, but I feel like it changes so fast. I’m pretty sure there is someone out there writing up a new story line that will be trending in a couple of years.

  4. Writing is extremely catharic for me. It’s a release. I enjoy it and my love for words is well known in my world. It comes naturally though – I don’t have to think too hard to do it. I compare it to a person who can draw well from the time they pick up a pencil. It’s something you’re born with. I am sure that my love of writing was born the day I was 🙂

    • I’d believe it! 🙂 Do you find writing to be an emotional catharsis? A creative one? What do you do when you have the urge to write, but have no specific subject or story in mind?

      • Hmmm…good question 🙂 Normally, I’ll write a short poem or prose, just to get the feelings into words. Writing is definitely emotionally cathartic at the best of times although I do find I need to let the creative juices flow from time to time 🙂

  5. Why I write is actually a strange question for me to answer. It comes from a combination of things, most of which stemming from my apparently natural talent with storytelling through writing and reading that writing outloud. But it’s not a natural talent. The truth is, I started working on my writing when I was in Sixth Grade. I was terrible at English, the worst. I still really am in many ways like my vocabulary, but like many things I was terrible at when I was younger, I forced myself to work on it to be better. Once my writing was well enough I tried every other medium of story telling I could manage, and although I would like to go back to drawing at some point to improve myself there, I fell back on writing because it really has actually become natural to me. I’ve done it so often and so frequently that stories just pour from me, often times without me even realizing the story I’m creating.

    This doesn’t mean the words always come to me, and that’s my major struggle. I’ve sat for three minutes before spinning my hand in the air to try and see if it could draw my memory of a specific word out with some magical word-capturing telekinesis. But scenes and stories do come to me better, and although I’m always improving on my storytelling ability with writing… most of all I write because… I like having written. I’ll go back later and read something I wrote and be able to feel every emotion and thought I had felt the day I had written that piece. Writing for me is a way of connecting with my past while still using it as a means to project me into the future.

    • Jordan, thank you– you always write such thoughtful responses! I especially love what you said at the end there, about using writing as a way to connect past and future. In his memoir on writing (please stop me if I refer to it too much) Stephen King has this excellent comparison of writing to telepathy. We project a thought, an image, an emotion; anyone can, at some later point, days, or years, or centuries down the road, pick up what we’ve written and experience our exact sentiments. It’s like magic!

      I want to congratulate you, too, for your ongoing efforts to improve your writing. I think many people have the “talent” but only a few are willing to pursue it. Good on you, and I look forward to seeing your progress!

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