Why Do I Write?

  • Why do I write...? That's a really good question and one that does not have a singular answer. As a child I never really felt the drive to write as some authors would probably say they have. I made up stories in my head and played them out with my Barbie dolls, but nothing was ever written on paper. The first time I realized I was actually a half decent writer was when I won the Knights of Columbus essay contest in the seventh grade. The topic was on what makes a nun or a priest trustworthy. By that, it's apparent I went to a Catholic school. I had a few weeks to write it and I wasn't exactly sure how I was going to do it. I kept typing and then deleting, writing what I thought they wanted to hear. Finally one night when I had the notepad program open on my PC, it dawned on me to just put what I thought should make a nun or priest trustworthy; not what I thought they expected me to say. At our final Mass of the school year, I was announced as the winner of the contest. I hadn't even expected to win, but I was happy and it was the first time any work of mine had gotten some type of recognition. I knew then that I had a sort of gift with words.

    From then on, I had written a number of essays throughout my high school years; mainly for summer reading, but I managed to have fun with them and write something different than what everyone in class had written. When I finished high school, I didn't have as many opportunities to write. The last thing I wrote that had any type of meaning was a letter that was read at my grandfather's funeral. After that I didn't write another word. Any story I could have written on paper stayed in my head due to a serious depression. It wasn't until five years after his death that I discovered a love for writing again. This time it was for a very different reason.

    On October thirty-first, in the year 2010, I signed onto Facebook and after rereading a favorite book I typed in the name of the heroine, and was actually quite surprised to find the profile. To this day I don't know why I even did that. Perhaps it was simple curiosity; maybe it was the universe opening a door for me to discover something great... I found out that the person behind the profile was actually a role player. For those who aren't sure what that is, it's when you create a character from your own imagination or use a character from a favorite book, T.V. show, or movie to elaborate on what's already been written; somewhat like fan fiction. I learned a completely new way of writing. It was really wonderful collaborating with others to create one big story, seeing what others could come up with on the spur of the moment. I found that I really loved this form of improvisation as I'm the type who flies by the seat of my pants when it comes to my writing.

    For nearly four years I participated in this role play game, taking on new characters and writing more fan fiction. And from there, I began to create original characters. It was a joy to find out what my imagination would toss out on a whim, what secrets lurked in the corners of my mind late at night. Writing became my outlet during a time when I was at my lowest. It saves me from myself on a daily basis; not that I'm a hair's breadth away from completely unraveling, but there are times when I feel like I just want to crumble and then when I sit down at the computer or even pick up a pen and look at a blank page in a notebook, my imagination takes me away from the dark thoughts that plague me... And other times the dark thoughts don't leave and it will show itself in my work.

    All in all, I guess the reason I really write is because it is my haven. It's the one place I can escape and be exactly who I want to be. I don't have to pretend. I don't have to put on a happy face and act like everything is perfect in its place. I can say what's on my mind. I can put all of my shades on display. Even if I never sell a book; even if I never get published, I know that I'll always have that place where pen and paper lets my dreams take flight.


    #whywrite

Comments

4 comments
  • Donna B
    Donna B Very well said. This is so much in line with another site I had made but had to close as I couldn't get help with it. A charity site for people to write their feelings, to express them as writing is healing. Goal was to have people on the site that...  more
    September 17, 2014 - 1 likes this
  • Adrienne Lewis
    Adrienne Lewis No problem and thank you. I think a site like that was very good idea. Everyone could use a shoulder to cry on or an ear to listen when you think no one is. I hope you get the chance to get that off that the ground again
    September 17, 2014 - 1 likes this
  • Donna B
    Donna B Me too as the goal was to also get funding for free counseling for people that can't afford it, once the site was active. Maybe someday I can get it online again.
    September 18, 2014 - 1 likes this
  • Melody Woodall-Smith
    Melody Woodall-Smith This is me exactly. And I'm currently an avid roleplayer and I find it's helped me through a lot, not the least of which, finding really good writers to write with helps me step my own game up to be a better writer in what I call my 'proper writing'...  more
    September 18, 2014 - 2 like this