Write Because You Must!

42-16022523 Why are you writing? Why do you pick up your pen, tap on your keyboard, or scribble in your notepad? When was the last time you asked yourself the question: Why do I do this? If you have never asked yourself this question, I encourage you to take a few minutes (right now) and ask yourself. If you really want to be a writer, you need to know the answer. Do you write because you want to be published? Do you write because you want to get paid? I have asked other writers this question and have gotten some interesting answers, but the answer that you should hear your inner most soul responding back should be something along the lines of, “Because I love it”. One day while I was in a coffee shop close to my house I was approached by a young lady who saw my writing and thought she would make herself comfortable at the table next to mine. She asked what I was writing and then told me that she also writes. “What do you write?” I asked “Oh, anything really. It depends on what I am feeling at the time.” She answered. “Do you have anything published?” I asked “No, but maybe someday.” “Have you submitted any of your work anywhere?” “No” “Researched any writing markets?” I questioned “No, never thought about it.” She said with a smile. “Let me ask you a question.” I started, “Why do you write?” She looked at me and looked at my laptop, she looked around the room, and twirled her curly black hair with her index finger and then looked at me, smiled and said, “Because I couldn’t image myself not writing.” That answer was awesome, that was the answer that rings loudly in the hearts of all writers. Writers write because they must, they can not imagine themselves void of pen and paper. They must write, because they must write. That young lady really encouraged me that day and I have thought about her several times since. I know first hand that many writers have part and full time jobs. They must make a living, because if you are like me (married with children) you can not afford to be a starving artist. I have to be accountable with my family and make sure that I am bringing home a paycheck week to week. So, I do what I don’t want to do and work a full time job, and then come home and stay up late writing, or wake up way too early to write before I go to work and clock in. Juggling around a full time work schedule, with being a father (mother), husband (wife), with all of the after school activities, it could be very easy to say, “I don’t have time to write” and get stuck in a cycle for the rest of your life. But, if you love to write, you must find the time, sacrifice, to get it done. If you plan on someday making a living, writing, then you must push yourself to be consistent with it even in the hardest times. If you love it, I encourage you to do what you can to find a way to allow it to support you. If you must write, write. But if you are so busy with life that you can not see yourself getting paid for your writing, don’t put the pen down- write, write, write, because you love it. Maybe no one will ever see your work, maybe you will never be published, maybe you don’t care to be; that is fine, just write and keep writing because YOU know that you are a WRITER and writers are who they are because they do what they must do…Write. I hope that you will discover ways to find time to get away to write the stories that you are dying to read. I also find it incredibly helpful to sneak off to a public library and read what others have so passionately written. Before you head off to school or work, look at yourself in the mirror and say, “I’m a writer who happens to work at McDonald’s, or Starbucks, or goes to school and Bla Bla University. I’m a writer who happens to be a full time manager at the bookstore or local deli. I am a writer who happens to work 40, 50, 60 hours a week…but no matter what I do to make a living, I know that I am a writer, and I’ll not stop writing.” Don’t get frustrated by the fact that you have a full time job. Don’t let your job steal your creative ability to fashion literary masterpieces on paper. Don’t let your occupation dictate who you are. Allow those things to be the financial tools by which you are given the home, computer, and materials, necessary to further the perfecting of who you are, as a writer. No matter what the future holds for you, Write, because you must! SamTheWriter signing off, www.samthewriter.com