Why We Write

I'm a little excited about an anthology that comes out this Friday.

It's a charity anthology which makes it extra fun, plus I'm one of the contributing authors!

I don't want to go on and on about the book. I'll save that for Friday when it actually comes out. :) For now, I want to talk about why we write. It's easy to forget sometimes and this book helped me remember.

If you ask most writers why they put pen to paper and agonize over sentence structure and adverb deletion they will tell you it's because they have to write. And it's true. For those of us tortured soles who spit out words on a daily basis, the idea of not writing sounds like a medieval torture device.

We write because we love books and the beautiful words that fill them. We write because stories are magical and they help us to feel the world in a way that would otherwise be impossible without a time machine and oodles of cash. We write because we have stories in our heads that demand to be told.

I write for all of those reasons, and for the same reason I ran home from my first day of kindergarten to show off the gold star Mrs. Green stuck to the top of my worksheet. Because there are people in my life I want to make proud.

Not that my family isn't already proud of me for lots of other reasons, and they share their love for me in ways that make me sing. But continuing to make them proud is a way for me to show my love for them.

Although I'm pretty excited about my first public dalliance into the published world, it isn't something I've made a big deal out of. I mentioned it to my mother, who while being amazingly supportive, doesn't really understand the world of publishing. And my husband was well aware of my work since he's the one who sees me typing away constantly.

I sent out the link to the book yesterday to my immediate family. I told them just a bit about the book and mentioned the piece I wrote was about the t-shirt quilt I made for my younger sister, Rachel.

Rachel emailed me back immediately and is responsible for reminding me about my more emotional reason for writing. In her own words, "Dude! That is awesome!!!! I almost cried reading this and remembering how much I loved my big sister for loving me so much to make that quilt for me. Congratulations : )"

And that right there is what keeps my butt in the chair when the thought of writing another sentence is physically painful. Knowing that doing what I love can make me happy and make my family proud is a priceless gift.

I hope that each of you has an equally priceless emotional tie to your writing.