Why Do I Write?


A difficult question to answer and on par with, “Why do I breathe?” The answer to the latter is, of course, “To live.” Yet put in a writing context, this answer seems somewhat melodramatic … except to other writers, who experience an identical motivation.

I have always written. Always will. Short stories, long stories (more commonly known as novels), poems, reports (yes, there is an art to writing succinct reports. If in doubt, ask anyone who has dozed off at an important meeting), even paragraphs to create a record, a memory, of transient and often amusing events.

And read … I read everything that passes before my eyes. Books, newspapers, advertisement boards – often, I find myself transfixed before a sign, pondering on veracity, while others around me focus more successfully on shopping. I have a confession: my secret vice is dictionaries. I pick up a dictionary to check a word and somehow the pages turn.

So, what’s with this writing business? Why do I and countless others sit alone for hours, spinning words and plots, creating alternative realities? I have no idea. Truly.

I write because I must.