There are a lot of reasons why people write. Money, a need to express what they can’t say or a burning desire to report on what is happening in the world. Whatever the reason, they write. I actually think that the reason is personal to every writer, be they a well-known author like J.K. Rowling, a blogger taking the world by storm or someone who writes in their journal every night for the simple pleasure of recounting their thoughts without fear of judgement. The ways and whys people write are numerous.
So what makes someone want to take their writing to the next step and get it published? In all honesty I can’t tell you, but what I can do is tell you what made me want to do that.
I read to escape my current reality. Let me be clear that my reality isn’t that bad, in fact it is pretty darn good, but I’m still not Harry Potter or Claire Fraser (two people I’d love to be for a bit). Reading stories allows me to experience things I would otherwise never get to. For a period of time I get to fight bad guys, fall in love again or even pretend to be a knight in medieval times. It broadens my understanding of the world and my place in it and that’s something I would really like to do for others.
There is also the part where people read to escape a reality that isn’t so crash hot. Believe me, I have done that as well. There is nothing like reading a great book that a) takes you away from your current situation and b) gives you a new perspective on life. A truly great book is life changing, making you think in a way you ordinarily wouldn’t.
For me that happened most recently with a book I read called Broken by Nicola Haken. The way she wrote about mental illness and love had me riveted and completely reconsidering the way I regard mental health. It’s a m/m romance but don’t let that fool you into thinking it’s sappy. That book pulled emotions from me like you wouldn’t believe.
So that’s why I write, to give people an escape and perhaps have them reconsider how they regard things. I’m not so naive as to think I’m having a massive impact on the world, but if I can provide an escape for someone who is stressing over things or is having a bad time of it, then that’s pretty awesome. If they look at the world in a better, more positive light then that’s even better.
Writing is a way to express what can’t be said and is usually only thought. However once it’s written it’s there for all to see and publishing makes this extremely real. Everyone can see what goes on in your mind! So hats off to those who take the next step and to those contemplating it. Letting others see your work makes you vulnerable and I applaud you for it.
Why do you want to take the next step?