The Voice Issue 30: July/August 2017 - Page 48

By YWP Summer Intern Shanrippwriting

writers' talk

The Purpose of Your Writing

I frequently ask myself, Why am I writing? Am I writing to share with other people and connect to them? Am I hoping to make a difference in their life? Or am I writing for myself, as a way of releasing the plaguing thoughts in my head?

The beauty of writing is that you don’t really need to have an answer to these questions. You’re completely free to write whatever you want, when you want. There are no boundaries in your mind.

My advice? When the call to write comes — that If-I-Don’t-Write-Immediately-then-I-Might-Die feeling — do it. Write because you love to write and you can.

What you do with it is also completely up to you, because it comes from you. It’s a little bit of who you are, whether you read it back and cringe, vowing that it will never grace the public’s eye, or decide that it’s meant to be posted and shared and spread all over the world. You don’t have to decide what it’s meant for before, during, or even after writing it. Stopping yourself from actually writing the piece because you don’t know what its purpose is, restricts the blissful freedom of creating something. Write it, and then come back to it later. The hardest part is getting it out into the world to begin with. Let the words flow freely because they can and that’s what’s moving you to do it.

You write something in hopes that the world sees? Great! Write something just for YWP? Incredible! For just your own eyes? Awesome! Over time you may find a balance between all those questions. Or you may not. That’s up to you. Write to write because you can and you love it. Don’t keep the words spinning around in your mind — set them free.