Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Why I Write

Why do I want to be an author? Well it’s obvious, I want to win an Oscar, earn loads of money, be invited to parties with other stars and have an excuse to kiss Hugh Jackman. Ooops, sorry, wrong career.

One thing is for sure, I’m not aspiring to earn loads of money with my writing. After talking to several authors I’ve come to the conclusion that writing will not make me rich, in fact it would make me quite poor if I quit my day job.

Am I aspiring to become famous? There again, considering the amount of books published and how difficult it is to promote your book, I don’t think fame is on the horizon either.

So, is it for the mere pleasure of writing? No. I enjoy writing, but I don’t find it’s enough; otherwise I wouldn’t go through the trials of becoming a published writer. What I’m really seeking is recognition. I want my effort to be recognized by others and to know that it is worth reading and it is enjoyable.

When I tell someone I’ve written a novel, they often tell me how proud I must feel and what an achievement that is. But the truth is I don’t feel fully achieved because I don’t have the certainty that it is worth reading. I should think many people can sit down and write a book, but not knowing if readers will enjoy and appreciate it will prevent them from feeling they’ve done a good job.

What are you seeking? Do you need recognition?


  1. Yes, I'm definitely after recognition. Though also, and probably more importantly, when writing fiction in particular, I want to give people the same pleasure I personally get from a good book.

    I think back to the books I've loved over the years, and how it feels to read them, and I would like someone else to get the same pleasure and emotional high from reading my stories.

    I love being paid for my work, but money doesn't do it for me and fame I can live without. I'd still write if I WASN'T being paid - and often do, in fact. For the sheer love of it.

    Thanks for posting this, Sarah.

  2. Sarah! I agree with every word of this . . . I've written two novels and friends "marvel" and talk about the accomplishment (which I appreciate) but I also feel as if it doesn't count or something without the recognition. I know it "should" but in my heart, it doesn't.

  3. I write to make other people laugh. That's it, pure and simple. If just one person says 'oh, that bit made me laugh, I've done that and I thought I was the only one', then I've done my job. I'd quite like to make them think too, but laughing is top of the list. Of course, I'm lucky enough to be published, otherwise I'd be stuck with making myself giggle. Which is good too.

  4. I'm with you, Sarah. I don't write just because I enjoy it (although I do, very much); I write because I want to move people, I want to make a difference. I want that recognition!

  5. I agree with Jane L. I'm most satisfied as a writer when I manage to write something that a touches a reader. There's a particular satisfaction to making people laugh: it's one of the hardest responses to generate.

    But the satisfaction that comes from a reader responding "that made me feel X" and that response making sense to me feels like hitting a home run.

    Thanks for the post!

  6. This strikes such a chord Sarah.

    I like to touch people too.

    And I guess I write the type of stuff that I'd like to read too.


  7. I get a huge buzz out of people who've read my book telling me how much they enjoyed it, but more than that, how they talk about the characters to me as though they are real. That's the best feeling in the world. Karen.

  8. Yup! I want recognition, for sure. I want people to read my writing, and to like it.

  9. I'm with Talli. I want people to read my stuff. :P

  10. Well, I hope we all achieve our goals, and those who already have achieved them, I hope they can keep doing so.

  11. I write because I feel compelled to do so and would definitely love to have recognition for writing something people might enjoy.


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