Writers are always asking questions: What should my next writing project be? Does this character have a satisfying arc? Will this poem convey the emotion I’m trying to capture? Do I need more notebooks? (Yes to new notebooks!) But the most important question writers should ask themselves is: “Why do I write?” The answer can determine your success as a writer. Writer’s Relief asks, Why do YOU write? And we have some suggestions to guide you in understanding your inner motives.
Honest Answers To The Question: Why Do You Write?
For your personal growth. Writing can help you process your emotions. Whether it’s a journal entry, a short story, a poem, or a creative nonfiction piece, writing can help you work through feelings and thoughts you might feel uncomfortable sharing with someone in person. Writing from an emotional place, such as grief, betrayal, or even joy, helps you turn your emotions into something concrete. Writing can make it easier for you to understand who you are—what you honestly think and believe. Being a part of a writing community can also offer a sense of belonging and camaraderie that enhances your life.
Because you enjoy writing! You don’t have to write for others or for a purpose—you can write because you like to write! Maybe the garden looks lovely today and you want to hold this moment in a poem. Or you want to give that crazy, interesting dream you had a different ending. If you’re itching to write but don’t have any ideas, check out our writing prompt generator or our 3-word writing prompts.
To help others. This doesn’t necessarily mean writing an essay on how to install bookshelves (although that is helpful!). Writing about coping with your personal life experiences can help readers who are struggling through the same thing. If you have worked through difficult moments or topics—grief, addiction, heartbreak, identity, self-worth are just a few examples—odds are someone else is dealing with similar problems. You can write to share life lessons and help people better manage something you have lived through.
To inform readers. If you have knowledge about a subject that is considered niche or obscure, share it! Let other people learn from your experiences. Writing short stories, a novel, or poetry also allows you to share truths in ways that your audience can better absorb and understand. Even through fiction, you can offer readers the opportunity to see something with objectivity or from a different point of view.
To entertain. Even with streaming shows, on-demand movies, social media, video games, and other high-tech distractions at their fingertips, people still enjoy reading a great story, book, or poem! You can write to give your audience something enjoyable to read, whether it’s a new idea or a new twist on a trope.
The answer to the question why do you write is different for every writer. You may lean toward one possible response or embrace a combination of reasons. But understanding why you write will help you focus and hone your craft and enhance your connection with your readers. And if your next answer is “to get published,” Writer’s Relief can help you with that! Our submission strategies have guided our clients in garnering thousands of acceptances (plus Pushcart Prize, Best of the Net, and other nominations). If you’d like to learn how we might be able to help you, submit your writing sample to our Review Board today!
Question: Why do YOU write?