Why I Write

Sharon tagged me the other day with the meme “Why do I write?”. Here it goes.

I first remember writing in Elementary School around, 3rd or 4th grade I suppose. I remember the teacher giving us a creative writing assignment such as “finish this sentence and write a paragraph about whatever else comes to mind”. I recall getting a good grade on that first assignment and really enjoying the opportunity to be creative. I don’t think we did those assignments very often, but when we did I loved it.

My next memory is from around that same time and involves playing “newspaper” with one of my best friends. We would take my Mom’s typewriter and create our own little newspaper, usually consisting of any story that showed us in a good light. We also had our share of stories involving the girls in our class and boogers. I have no idea where we got the idea to make a newspaper, because producing a newspaper isn’t exactly the most lucrative profession for an eight year old to dream about, what with firefighter and G.I. Joe out there. I might have come from Muppet Babies, now that I think about it.

My next memory is of fifth grade, where we were supposed to write a story and read it to the class. Most people wrote a one page story of 100 or so words. Of course, I already had a “work in progress” starring my friends and I so I used that. It was at least ten pages long and had no real plot structure or really any point at all. I am sure I bored my classmates to tears though I think I got a B or an A based on effort.

I don’t remember much writing in High School, though I’m sure we did a little. I guess I was too busy playing basketball, baseball, or hockey, or being a teenager.

My freshman year of college I had a creative writing course, one that everyone had to take. I wish this came senior year because I think I would have gotten a lot more out of it. I remember writing a lot of first person stories based almost solely on personal experiences. I still didn’t get it, yet.

Fast forward to a couple years ago. My local newspaper was having a contest where they started a short story and the readers were to submit their take on the next 500 or so words. I remembered back to when I was in Elementary School and how much fun this was and decided to give it a try, not really expecting to win. To my surprise my entry was picked that week and a few more times since. I have been a “struggling writer” since.

I think the main reason I write is because I enjoy reading so much and want to create something that other people will enjoy as well. There are few things in the world as good as hearing that something I wrote made someone else smile on an otherwise bad day, or made someone think about something in a way they hadn’t thought before.

Another part of it is probably to leave a little legacy for when I’m gone. I guess I have a small desire to leave my mark on this world in a positive way, and hopefully I can do that through my writing. Besides, what other hobby is there that you can do for the cost of pen (or pencil) and paper, but has the potential to touch so many people?

I tag whoever else would like to participate. Leave you web site in the comments and I will create a post pointing to everyone’s efforts.

13 thoughts on “Why I Write

  1. This was great! Thanks for sharing!
    Isn’t it funny how inspiration can come from anywhere, and in that instant your a different person.
    You’re a writer now, and for the rest of your life.
    Interesting…

  2. This was a great post. I love that you made a newspaper that showed you in a good light. I’m considering maybe doing that now. I could pass it around the office at work or something. Or maybe not.

  3. Leo – thanks for the compliment. I think this was one of my better posts.

    Paperback Writer – look forward to seeing your post

    mixi – thanks! I totally recommend publishing a newspaper just to sing your own praises. It worked for me (or not).

  4. I’ve always been interested in stories, since a very young age. It was fun to read about where your desire to write came from, and got me thinking about my own version of the ‘writer’s tale.’

  5. Pingback: Why I Write (Link) « The Struggling Writer

  6. http://alabaster.wordpress.com/2006/10/22/why-i-dont-write-is-not-writing-always-writers-block-or-is-it-sometimes-just-not-being-a-writer/

    I wrote an article a few months back about my own struggles. I enjoyed reading yours (made me smile..though alas, my day was quite good already ;))
    Anyway, mine is long and very out of date, but I thought you might like to look at it. The good news is that since then I’ve been much more prolific…though still not prolific enough. I’d also recommend you look up Nanowrimo if you want to get that novel out. It got me to write 52,000 words of a novel (almost finished) in one month. It may well be terrible (I’m not re-reading until I’ve finished in case I hate it too much to carry on).
    Anyway, I’m rambling. But I really enjoyed your post.
    I shall explore this sturggling land when I have more time at hand.
    Oops, Rhyme.

  7. I love this post. It actually made me think about myself…what makes me write? It would be a great exercise for me to think it through, and write it up. I love the history you give about being a kid and enjoying writing. That’s so great.
    You know…somebody is going to “steal” this idea, I’m sure…this would make such a good coffee-table book, “Why do you write?”–with features on favorite contemporary writers/novelist/bloggers.
    Thanks for sharing!
    mary

  8. I write in Spanish but luckily I’be bumped to your blog which is very much interesting. It’s not for free that you’ve got so much commenters. Thanks for sharing and, I hope I can be able to post something related to this post in so clear English as yours. Thanks again!

  9. Pingback: Por qué escribes? Algunas de nuestras razones « B.P.L.E

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