Mark Terry

Friday, October 01, 2010

Why do you write?

October 1, 2010
And this time I will allow: Because I have to. (Just try to expand on that, lest we believe you have undiagnosed obsessive-compulsive disorder).

My answer: I don't know.

18 Comments:

Blogger Travis Erwin said...

At this point I am writing to prove the bastards wrong as much as anything else.

6:27 AM  
Blogger Stephen Parrish said...

It's my only shot at immortality.

6:45 AM  
Blogger Mark Terry said...

Travis, well, yeah, vengeance. I figure eventual fame & fortune will allow me to be smug about "all those schmucks who turned me down!"

6:47 AM  
Blogger Mark Terry said...

Stephen,
Except maybe your daughter.

6:47 AM  
Anonymous Eric Mayer said...

Like Travis part of my reason for writing is to spite all those who claimed I couldn't. But I also love playing with words. It's hard to isolate one particular reason why I keep writing. Money has never come into it. Except that I would love to make enough writing so I could write full time. I think I kind of incorporated the desire to write into my personality at a young age. When I learned to read I was just blown away by books. They seemed like magic. I immediately thought that creating that sort of magic was the best thing anyone could do. My attitude hasn't changed much.

10:21 AM  
Blogger Robert Carraher said...

Since I was very young I have found that by writing something down, I define what it means to me. This worked for other things like history, science, current events as well as expressing my emotions or fascination with a particular subject. I had one analyst tell me that I use that as a tool to depersonalize a subject, and I have others tell me that I use it to make it my own. I think they were both wrong (or maybe both right). Deep inside it was a way for me un-gumble the thoughts and emotions,or complex ideas. Later on it was just too much fun.

10:21 AM  
Blogger Natasha Fondren said...

Because the universe told me to.

(Okay, I do believe that, but I also wrote it because I knew it would make you roll your eyes. ;-)

Anyway, my reasons for writing have changed over the years. At first, it was just pure fun. Then to understand myself. Then for readers. Needing money is often mixed in there. Now it's because I love it, because I need the money, because I love people and want them to feel understood and accepted and loved just as they are. And story is just awesome and incredible. I'm head over heels crazy for it.

Ya' ask a corny question, ya' get a corny answer. :-)

10:43 AM  
Blogger Mark Terry said...

Eric,
I was always a creature of books.

11:01 AM  
Blogger Mark Terry said...

Robert,
I wouldn't discount the answer of "why I write" being "because it's fun" at all.

One writer I was on a panel with a few years ago said in answer to this question was that "writing was how I process the world."

11:02 AM  
Blogger Mark Terry said...

Natasha,
You're right, I rolled my eyes. :)

The universe has been telling me I deserve to make a few million dollars a year, but so far it's not helping me out much.

11:03 AM  
Blogger Erica Orloff said...

Mark:
Because I'm a writer. It's how I process the world, see the world, etc.

Beyond that, I consider that over my lifetime of having a serious illness, it became clear to me I could never have a "real job." And so I think I pursued it with a relentlessness because if I was to make a LIVING at it, I would have to work my butt off to be able to work from home and have the flexibility my disease requires. When I think about it, I doubt, if I was making six figures doing something OTHER than writing, that I would have pursued it as hard as I do and have.

So sometimes, what seems like a bad had dealt to you can have a positive.

11:06 AM  
Blogger Mark Terry said...

Erica,
I remember Alan Alda saying something along the lines of, "If there's absolutely anything else you can do besides being an actor that will make you as happy and fulfilled as acting, do it, because acting's such a hard road." I'm inclined to agree with that sentiment. And there's always a trade-off in terms of money and/or happiness, although not everybody feels that way. But if you were making $250,000 a year at something that you weren't really happy doing and then traded it for $30,000 a year being a writer, it might, in some cases, be too big a trade-off. Depends on the person, though.

11:22 AM  
Blogger Linda Pendleton said...

Because I am creative and writing fills my creative urge and gives me satisfaction and pleasure. I love it!

I also love the meeting of the minds.

11:49 AM  
Blogger Mark Terry said...

Linda,
(This isn't being facetious, I'm just not 100% sure what you mean)... what do you mean by meeting of the minds?

11:51 AM  
Blogger Lynn said...

Because hope spring eternal..

I know, I got an eye roll too.

But seriously, I believe I can write a better book than some of the ones I've been reading.

Cocky? No. Determined? Yes.

4:54 AM  
Blogger Mark Terry said...

Lynn,
Actually, no eye roll on that one. I'm sure that despite getting published--and I bet this applies to plenty of midlist published authors, too--I'm always hoping there'll be a big jump in sales, etc, rather than incremental climb. So yeah, hope springs eternal.

5:57 AM  
Blogger JaxPop said...

Because I have a bad back & can't surf anymore? I really suck at golf so I gave away 3 sets of clubs? And one beer gives me a buzz, so a drinking habit is out. So maybe it takes the place of what I can't do these day. Really, I have no freakin' clue.

Sorry - not much of a contributor.

1:52 PM  
Blogger Linda Pendleton said...

What I mean by "a meeting of the minds," Mark, is the good feeling when you know your mind as a writer and what you have created, has connected with the mind of a reader in a rewarding way for both. It is that hope your reader will be entertained and inspired by your writing. To me, that is what writing is all about.

11:09 PM  

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