What Makes Your Pen Quiver

I’ve mentioned here how it has always been my dream to write professionally. However, writing posts for a blog directly conflicts with writing a book, and taking a side in the battle demanded I weigh my motivations for each.

I am distracted easily by things like this, and I ended up zooming out a bit and asking myself:

What makes me want to write?

The easy answer is that I love to write. But it’s also pretty circular.

I eat jelly donuts because I love jelly donuts

Without getting too high-school-essay on myself, I wanted to know WHY I write.

It’s not because it’ll make me rich. Novel writing for wealth is like eating Fig Newtons for weight loss; feasible, but probably not ideal. There’s a great article here so I won’t belabor the point, but if you’ve researched making big bucks as a novel writer, you’ll find most have a real job.

It’s also not because it’s easy. Even if you love it, writing is work.

So it’s hard and pays like allowance.

Why do I write?

There is something deeply rewarding in sharing your creation. You’re giving people a glimpse into your world, and if it clicks into place, there is no greater reward. When you can make sense of one another through a blog post, picture or novel, the connection created bypasses all rationale and appeals directly to heart and soul.

I love writing for its power to stir emotion. Evoking a laugh or a tear drives me to perfect the art, to create something that people love. I want you to cry when my characters die and cheer when they win. They are the children of my life experience.

When you love my characters, you love a part of me.


Now that I’ve spilled my guts, it’s your turn.

Why do you write?

21 thoughts on “What Makes Your Pen Quiver

  1. littlequietgirl says:

    About the same reasoning. But also, I know that I have a unique set of experiences and voice (everyone does) and I worry that if I don’t put it out there, it could be gone forever. Who’s to say that what we write couldn’t end up being really important to someone, somewhere? I’m probably being a bit too grandiose about my own abilities, I know, but still the urge is there.

    1. petermonaco says:

      I agree. A lot of times I realize something, think “Hey, I should write that down”, then proceed to not write it down and forget it forever.
      The blog helps me combat the ghosties of good ideas. Thanks for sharing!

  2. dlaiden says:

    Just started blogging and I get what you mean: I’ve written ten posts but now the book I’m actually supposed to be working on is getting a little cold. I’m trying to continue it by getting to the roots of why I started it: a love of poetry and a need to be heard. It’s not easy getting back into fiction-writing mode, though. :/

    1. petermonaco says:

      Not easy indeed. And I think I should add a “need to be heard” to my reasoning. I guess having a public blog instead of a secret journal implies that but still….

  3. Ruth Rainwater says:

    I write fiction because I have to, I don’t have a choice – the story and characters are there and make me put them on paper. I don’t think of it as writing; it’s more that I’m a conduit for the characters to tell their story. Usually I start with a picture in my head, or a phrase, or an idea, and start writing. Some of the stories end up being nothing like I envisioned. The one I wrote for NaNo last year took on a life of its own, as most of my stories do, and things happen that even I didn’t see coming! I did actually finish one, but the other one I’m writing is going on and on and doesn’t want to end. So I just ‘go with the flow’ and see where it takes me. My blogs, well, I keep a daily Gratitude Journal. And I recently started another blog for my writing. My main blog that I started has sort of fizzled out at the moment, but I will eventually get back to that one, too.

    Sort of a long-winded answer, but you did ask!

    1. petermonaco says:

      Ask I did and thanks for sharing. I love hearing the different forces drawing people into writing.

      I’ve tried to write sort of “free-flowing” like you and I’ve discovered my characters/plots are prudes. They will only step out onto the paper if I have prepared a nice, cushy outline for them to land on.

      1. Ruth Rainwater says:

        I tried, I really tried, to do outlines. I couldn’t even do it for my grad school papers or my thesis. My brain just doesn’t work that way (unless I’m writing policies and procedures, then my brain is quite orderly!)

  4. mariehermannwrites says:

    I write because, somehow, my personality oozes out through words rather than if you were to speak to me face-to-face. On the inside I’m an inspirationalist; I’m a researcher; I’m an artist; And I’m a comedian. On the outside I’m a quiet mouse. I write because I have to let it out.

    1. petermonaco says:

      I think that’s true of a lot of people. It’s the same reason– maybe on a smaller scale– why people love “texting” versus a phone conversation. I know I’m that way. Text me and you’ll have your response quickly. Call me? Not so much.

    1. petermonaco says:

      Hey, not imaginary, just insubstantial; I have it completed, just not on paper. 🙂

      But if you buy it now, I will definitely include a jelly donut, as much as it would pain me to sacrifice such a delicious treat.

      1. The White Pumpkin says:

        hmmm…lets see if I get this straight… I pay for insubstantial not written on paper book that exists perhaps only in your mind and I get a jelly donut, through the internet. hmm… let me think about that one. 🙂

  5. Liza says:

    Writing (blogging) is relaxing for me, my form of escapism, if you will. I may say something that will one day have a profound effect on someone….

  6. grannyK says:

    Writing makes me feel less invisible. With such a huge world and so many people, so much sadness and hardships, it’s easy to feel like a spec of dust in the dustpan. Even if only one person reads a post of mine and thinks, ” Hey, I feel that way too”, it helps me to feel connected and not so alone. I’m not sure if any of that makes sense.

  7. wordblooms says:

    I write to clarify the muddle in my brain. It helps me sort things out, and lets me examine what I’ve put down, to see if it really reflects my feelings. That often leads to a better re-prioritization and a better perspective on things. It also gets my synapses firing, which is (hopefully) a good thing!

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