Why Bother Writing at All?

On the final day of a recent class, one participant thanked me profusely and shared that she was very pleased with the progress she had made. She had been avoiding and agonizing over an article for months and during the class she decided to just abandon it completely. After that she felt much, much happier. I’m still unsure whether I ought to consider this as a success or a failure of my methods, but it did cause me to reflect about the question: “Why do people bother to write at all?” The barriers and challenges to writing are many and powerful, so there must be sufficient motivation for us to undertake the effort to write. Why do you want to write? There are as many answers to this question as there are people who write. Getting clear about your motivation(s) and the importance of writing in your life will enhance your commitment to actually doing it. How important is writing compared to other aspects of living that you engage in? Without sufficient desire it is hard to muster the energy to face the challenges writing entails. Perhaps your desire is strong but you ignore or repress it. You may be only partially aware of how important writing is to you. Staying in touch with your motivation will assist you in sustaining your commitment to the ongoing practice of writing. Below are some common motivators from a list in my book, The Blocked Writer’s Book of the Dead.Which apply to you?

___ To achieve educational goals                        ___ To sell something

___ To achieve professional goals                       ___ To stimulate change

___ To contribute to a field of knowledge         ___ Creative expression

___ To answer a question or solve a problem   ___ To entertain

___ To investigate situations and reveal facts   ___ To make money

___ Personal reflection and growth                     ___ For enjoyment of the process

___ To build a reputation and gain recognition ___ To help people

___ To take on a challenge                                     ___ To rebel or provoke

___ To enjoy people’s reactions                            ___ To influence or persuade

___ Responding to an inner drive to write          ___ To tell a story

___ To fulfill someone else’s expectations

About David Rasch

Author, psychologist, speaker, teacher, consultant, workshop leader
This entry was posted in Common Writing Block Problems, The Blocked Writer's Book of the Dead and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Why Bother Writing at All?

  1. ixchel leigh says:

    Writing is important. It’s a channel for our innermost feelings, allowing them to be expressed rather than stay simmering inside. It’s creative, and creative expression is important to everyone.

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