Discovering the Relevance of Words
“Writing isn’t about making money, getting famous, getting dates, getting laid, or making friends. In the end, it’s about enriching the lives of those who will read your work, and enriching your own life, as well. It’s about getting up, getting well, and getting over. Getting happy, okay? Getting happy.”
― Stephen King, On Writing
There are an infinite amount of reasons as to why people write. I write for the sake of catharsis, for sanity, because the characters in my head won’t stop talking, and because I, or they, have a story to tell. I write because I hope to inspire someone else to write, or to read, or scream and throw my writing across the room. I write because I want you – yes, I’m talking to you – to read the words that I need to say, and for those words to mean something to you.
I have never once sat down to write, and thought to myself: This is going to get me somewhere. I’m going to be famous, get girls, get laid, get money, and buy the fanciest typewriter I can find. If we follow our dream to be a well-known author, and that is our only motivating goal, then we are already failed authors. It has absolutely nothing to do with being well-known.
Only 2% of the world’s authors make enough money to call it their “job.” TWO PERCENT. Think about that. There is one person born every 8 seconds. There are approximately 7 billion people in the world. If your goal is to get famous, you will get lost in the mix. I promise.
My worst nightmare as a Creative Writing teacher is the student who comes into my class and says, “I’ve written a novel.” Then again, I’ve said those words too. I’ve written a novel. It’s on this very same computer that I’m typing on. It’s also printed out and sitting in my closet, or on my desk, or in a drawer, or wherever I put in 5-years ago when I “finished” it. It’s a terrible phrase.
More than that, I hate Starbucks Authors. I’m currently one of them. Yep, I’m writing in a Starbucks, and I hate everything about being here. Every Starbucks has at least 5 people with laptops or notebooks, and they are all writing the next great novel. I suppose I hate myself right now. At least I’m not writing a novel? Sure, maybe I don’t hate myself that much.
Writing, however, makes me happy. So I do it. I write wherever I am, and whenever I can.
How about you?
Question of the Day:
Why do you write, and what do you get out of it?