Many times in the last few weeks I’ve had to ask myself the question, why do I write? Having written two YA novels and with the third one on its way, I recently stopped and questioned myself about the writer’s world.
For me I have always had a love of stories. I grew up with stories and storytelling. It gave me joy to listen to my teacher, mother or librarian read to me. This was part of my inspiration. I loved to write and create my own stories and worlds from a very young age. Always having the passion and burning desire to write, I took the plunge left my full time teaching role and turned to writing.
However today I stop and ask the question to writers, ‘why do you write?’
Do you write because this is what you love doing? Or are you writing because you have a story you are dying to tell? Or do you write because one day you dream of having your book published with a major publisher.
Being in the industry now since 2008, I have come to the simple answer that writers write for different reasons. Some write because they have had a mid life crisis, others write to become famous one day and some write for sheer pleasure and enjoyment.
For me it is the latter. I love to write and feel it is a part of me. I want others to develop a love for stories too. I would like people to read just for fun not to be critical.
I ask the question again, ‘why do you write?’ From my experience I have learnt this is a tough industry. I have had others criticise me just because my novels are not published with a large publisher and others who have criticised saying I am not totally correct with my grammar and judging my writing and ability to write.
However my answer to all this negativity is self belief. What right do others have to judge? How can they be so critical of ‘your’ life and what ‘you’ have chosen to do with it? Do they know why you want to write? Or what your personal journey has been to get to where you are today?’
So this brings me back to my original question of ‘why do you write?’ I think it is important in some ways for a writer to keep this question at the back of their mind. In this tough industry of constant rejections for many reasons you have to keep your head above the water. My mind has changed many times about the direction of my writing but in the end, I believe you do what you want to do. If you feel comfortable to write for children follow that path. However do not let the voice of others who may discourage make you stop writing. Refocus and ask yourself ‘why do I write?’
My advice to writers is live true to ‘yourself’ and your ‘passion’ nothing else matters.