Tag Archives: Mad about Words

Why do I Write?

Mary Ann de Stefano writes, “MAD’S Monday Muse” and put this quote in her weekly post for readers to think about.

“I never take for granted that I’ll be able to write. There’s no acorn stash of ideas in my desk drawer. There’s only the wanting to know my life through writing, a wish felt sometimes as desire, sometimes as desperation. What reservoir the words come from remains a mystery to me.” — Jane Hirshfield in On Calligraphic Perception: A Conversation with Jane Hirshfield
Published by MAD about Words | #263 April 14, 2014

It raised questions for me:

• Why do I write?
• Do I write from a wish felt, desire, or desperation?
• Do I have a stash of ideas?
• Do I take for granted that I’ll be able to write?

Writing to me is like playing golf is to my husband, a pastime. I wasn’t born with a passion to write; never kept a journal nor wrote more than a newsletter or report for my job. I started writing after we retired and moved to Ormond Beach, Florida.

Words invaded my head, stayed there, and didn’t give me peace until written down.

I wrote secretly. Something in the newspaper or a look from a salesperson would trigger a story or emotion that nagged me. Other writers have said it happened to them and reference the experience as a “call to write”.

One day my husband stuck his head inside my study door, and asked, “What are you doing?”
I confessed,” Writing.”

Shortly after, an announcement for the Florida Writer’s Association meeting appeared in the newspaper with a phone number, I called and started attending. That was three years ago in January of 2011.

I have had some success; Florida Writer’s Association published two 1200 word stories in anthologies. However, I haven’t completed any other work, and writers block has replaced the words that used to magically jump into my head.

So, NO! As Hirshfield says, “I never take for granted that I’ll be able to write.” Moreover, I don’t have a stash of ideas.

What I do have is total absorption when writing.

It becomes a two-hour vacation. All of life’s demands disappear. The tedious part of editing is what I enjoy the most. The words go from a kindergarten version to one I feel good about. It’s the equivalent of a golfer hitting a hole in one.

I start with a feeling, then struggle to capture the moment with words and transport my experience to other minds.

Seriously, Why do you write?

(After visiting some other posts by bloggers participating in Zero to Hero I realize I am way too serious, nevertheless this is my post for day three . . .  Seriously, tell me something positive)