People I know without the drive to write fiction often ask me why I spend so much time and effort in putting my thoughts down on paper. Most folks I associate with are quite logical and writing fiction is rather illogical on many levels. The chance of getting published is slight and if this does happen, the chance of becoming known (or even rich and famous) are very slim.
Writing does take a decent amount of time away from other aspects of my life (and those other parts of my world also steal away from my writing time, so the balance is usually fair.) I could, perhaps, abandon my quest for publication, but this will never happen. I do not write to become a published author. I write to share my thoughts, ideas, worlds, characters, stories, inventions, and parts of my very soul with other people.
If they enjoy my efforts, there is no way to measure my joy. If a kind eye is not focused on my text, and harsh words are said, I am greatly disappointed, but I use those emotions and reactions to fuel my drive to write.
What is my goal? Of course, I have a strong desire to see my name on the cover of a book sitting on a shelf at eye level in the “Current Releases” section of a major book store. I’d love to attend a book signing and be That Guy With The Pen. I will most certainly need a new pair of shorts the first time I hear the words, “You’re one of my favorite authors.” Despite all of these platitudes, my goal of writing is quite simply to tell stories. I hope to entertain, educate, enlighten, or just plain amuse my readers.
I think the most important reason I write is to bring relief and distraction from the worries of Real Life. Not my Real Life, but my readers’. Like many others, I’ve had more downs than ups in my life. What got me through them was my ability to escape those downs by reading. It didn’t make Real Life go away nor did I ignore what was going on around me. I was merely able to read about these imaginary people to alleviate the stress of what was going on around me a bit. If my writing can bring comfort, distraction, or just a simple few minutes of escape from the worries of the world around the reader, then I’ve accomplished my goal.
I have so many stories in my head, I have an incredibly hard time deciding which ones are worthy for putting on paper let alone getting in front of another set of eyes.