The simple answer is because I love doing so, despite all the trials and tribulations.
However, this wouldn’t be a very long blog post if I left you with a simple answer, so prepare for a long winded explanation as to why I love to write.
I love to write because I love stories, whether listening to them or telling them myself.
I’ve always been listening to stories, ever since I was a toddler. From teachers reading stories out loud to quieten a class of rowdy kids, to my uncle telling us stories to convince me, my brother and my cousin to go to sleep, to my mum telling us fantastical stories to pass time while stuck in traffic or while she ironed, each left me captivated and totally at ease. In fact, nearly all the time, they left me feeling sleepy. That was the aim with my uncle’s stories and some of my mum’s stories, but it certainly wasn’t the case in school. Still, there was something about stories I adored and I craved more. I constantly wanted to be told stories.
Perhaps it comes as no surprise to you that I found reading and devoured books because I was hungry for the next story. But it might surprise you to know that I struggled with reading initially. Although, once I got the hang of it, there was no stopping me. My reading habits, or lack thereof nowadays, can be saved for another blog post. But it wasn’t just reading. TV shows, films, theatre, games, and so on and so forth, have been equally as good as books in captivating me with their fascinating stories.
While indulging in stories still continues to captivate me, I also enjoy telling stories. Whether by anecdotal tales I tell, thanks in large part to my Irish heritage, or by writing it down for myself and for anyone I share it with, I enjoy writing down the stories I create in my head rather than letting them fester. They might linger in notebooks, never to be touched again, or they might form a larger piece, but I love crafting a character’s story and seeing where it’ll lead.
A large part of why I enjoy stories so much is escapism. Who wants to live in reality when you can fantasise riding a dragon and using magic? The more stories I indulge in, the more expansive my fantasies become, and the more I struggle to enjoy reality. Not that I dislike reality, because sometimes reality is equally as good. But sometimes you can’t help but prefer the fantasies. It’s a preference I’ve always had.
Furthermore, I’ve always been intrigued by other people and their stories. Everyone has a story and I’m always desperate to learn more. I want to know what makes them them. What are their fears? What are their dreams? What makes them smile? What makes them sad? Sometimes, the interactions are brief but they leave a lasting impact. Sometimes, the interactions are long but I wish they hadn’t been. It depends on the person and the life they’ve lived.
Being able to put yourself in another’s footsteps is a vital step for any writer. Interacting with and observing other people helps massively with this because it’s all well to get new perspectives from different mediums, but talking to people in reality is a rich, never ending source of stories. I’ll always give a person a chance, within reason, because I enjoy seeing how their life differs to mine. Sometimes then it’s a good source for inspiration.
But most importantly, the reason I write is because I need to. I get this itch and I’m desperate to pick up a pen and jot it down on paper, or allow my fingers to fly across the keyboard and create something on a blank Word document. I always write down my feelings and it’s so therapeutic to get them out. Or it’s nice to escape my own reality and craft a story of a different reality.
Long blog post short, I write because I love stories, I’m fascinated by people and their stories, and I have this itch to write. I’m a creative person by nature, so writing it down is pivotal to my general existence.
Why do you write, if you do?