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Writing for its own sake

February 15, 2013

Because I am an insane moron, I took a 365 blogs in a year challenge and have a second blog going. (My rules are thus–if I write for this blog, I don’t have to write for that blog that day. So far, I’ve done both, but it’s messed up my work in progress. Oh bother!)

I thought about this as I read a blog by Stephen Jay Schwartz on Murderdati. If you read it, eventually he gets to the real question–why do you write? Do you write for fame? Money? To get published? To entertain? To feed the ego? What’s your motivation?

He talked about some of those motivations, but in the end, he says he’s “grown to appreciate this ability to express my views in writing for its own sake.” Writing for its own sake. Those five words bare repeating. They represent, perhaps, the highest motivation for writing.

Why do you write?

I write to have written.

I write because I like how it feels when I make words serve me by building a structure that lets people see in their heads what I saw in mine. I write because I like how it feels to walk away from something and know that I made people feel what I felt when I imagined and constructed the piece. I write because I can’t imagine not writing. (And to feed my ego and work toward making money at it, and all that.)

But I strive to write for its own sake.

Which brings me to the other blog. (That’s right, I’m cheating on you.) As I write this, I’ve written two short stories on that blog. One, I think, is good. The other I must tweak a little before I publish it, but I like the twist at the end. I’ve grown accustomed to being able to make words serve me. I take it for granted.

Taking things for granted is typically bad. In this case, I think it allows me to write for the purest possible reason–for its own sake. Because it’s enjoyable.

How about you? Do you write for its own sake?

  1. February 15, 2013 9:40 am

    May as well ask “Why do I eat?” One metaphoric meal feeds the body, the other the soul.

  2. February 16, 2013 7:37 am

    Of course I write for its own sake. I can’t not write.

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