I set my fingers on the keyboard, the familiar keyboard with the little bumps on the F and J, my muscle memory automatically curling my fingers over the keys, poised in the usual position, and my fingers twitch as my mind struggles, drawing a blank.

Why do I write?

 

I thought this would be an easy question, but it’s one of those things that is so clear in my mind, but so difficult to put to paper.

So, I ask myself again…

Why do I write?

 

I guess I write for that very reason.

I write to get my ideas onto a piece of paper in a cohesive, organized way. To describe in admittedly self-gratifying imagery the world I have built. To see what my characters see, touch what my characters touch, smell what my characters smell, taste what my characters taste, hear what my characters hear.

I write to inform others on a subject, and to inform myself on the same subject. To get a better understanding of something, and hope that I can help even just one other person grasp a better understanding as well. To open my own mind, and the minds of others. To help other people understand what it’s like to step in someone else’s shoes, to see the world through a filter colored by somebody else’s experience.

I write scripts to give actors the opportunity to step outside of themselves.

Their own lives, fears, doubts, dreams, adventures, and try on somebody else’s, and then show other people what that’s like, to invite an audience to experience these things that make us so distinctly human. To allow these experiences of other people’s fears, doubts, dreams, adventures, but in a place where everyone can walk away at the end. To allow the audience a safe space in which to feel their emotions, connect to the deepest parts of their souls, in this private, intimate way. And I write to allow myself the same.

I write when the thoughts in my head are tangled up, and the only way to untangle them is to pull them out, strand by strand, and place them on a piece of paper. I write to calm my brain so I can sleep at night. I write to get all of the nonsense out of the way in order to let the realness of life in. I write to deal with the realness of life.

I write when the thoughts in my head are tangled up…

I write my dreams down because sometimes they are so ridiculous that I want to be sure to have a record of them forever, and have a good laugh sometime later.

I write because it’s fun.

I get to collaborate with brilliant people and create something I care about. I write to experiment. Throw something on a page, messily, badly, and then clean it up. The clean-up is my favorite part.

I write because communication is very important to me, and one of the ways I communicate best is through writing. I love words, and I love language. But I have a funny relationship with the English language; I often say that we’re on partial speaking terms. Words will fail me when I try to speak out loud, but, with writing, the words always come. Sometimes with the help of a thesaurus, but, still, they come.

I write because I get lost in my writing.

I must disappear into a time warp tunnel, thinking only half an hour went by while writing this, but it was actually an hour and 46 minutes. I don’t know where the time goes when I write, but I’m anxiously awaiting the day I look up at a mirror from my computer and wonder where all the wrinkles came from.

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