Tuesday's ... not so much a tale, more of a 'telling' about Why I Write

People still ask me why I write.  In a nutshell, I write because I have to.  I used to think it was because I wanted to, that it was something fun to do to pass the time.  I slowly came to the realisation that I had to do it, it was like an itch that has to be scratched.  It’s still fun, though sometimes I resent it … it can be hard, awkward, painful even.

I put it aside, ignore it, focus my time, energy and effort on other things.  But I’m always aware of it, like it’s calling to me … like a siren song?  No … not anything as exotic as that.  More like a nagging relative, constantly reminding me that I can’t keep putting it off, it needs to be addressed, so pick up that damned pencil and get on with it!

Even as I worry that I have nothing pertinent to say, that I have no story worth telling, still that urge, that need to write is there.  And ‘to write’ is the operative phrase here.  To feel the pencil (or pen) in my hand, to move it across the page, watching as the words form out of nowhere, knowing that this is the physical manifestation of my silent thoughts, the workings of my mind … miraculous or what?  The ability to think, to mentally create and pull together seemingly random thoughts, then to watch it come alive on the page where anyone can see it, bear witness to it …

When I write, I know it’s something I can do, that I owe this ability to no one, save a higher power … this is me!  Sometimes it helps me prove my worth, helps me feel justified … just because I don’t have a degree, never amounted to much in terms of a career, that I'm what some look down on as ‘just a stay-at-home mum’ – though that’s important work!  Yet I have the ability to dream up and birth characters and stories.

And I keep writing, getting past the bouts of lazy-itis, to experience that ecstatic moment when nothing else exists, not even me it feels like – I’m just the conduit – all that matters is the outpouring of coherent words … the point when the story writes itself and nothing else matters.  At that moment, I can’t write fast enough, tripping over myself, not wanting to lose the magic of that extended moment.  Time stops.  Yet when I finally pause and look up, over an hour has passed.  Those times happen so seldom, but I keep waiting for them …

I can’t imagine not writing.  I think I’d go mad if I denied myself the time and effort to write.  I have to write.  And I suppose that’s why I write – it is part of who I am.