Why Do You Write?

Ever spend months/years trying to figure out the best way to answer a question, and then read it somewhere and think “holy crap, that’s spot on!” A friend of mine recently answered this question in an interview, and did so in a more clear and succinct manner than I ever could, so I thought I’d share.



Why do you write?

“Writing is what I do. It’s how I understand the world. I see it as my profession, but it’s more than that. I have always felt that there are essentially two mes. There is the me that I show the world and the private person I keep for myself, the person who is simply trying to figure everything out. I don’t know if I am alone in this, but my guess is that I am not.

It is the private person who I am protecting from the rest of the world who needs writing, really needs it. It’s the way I understand what this place is and where I am. It’s the way that I allow myself long thoughts. In those few moments in my life when I haven’t written, I have found myself contemplating less and reacting more. I have found myself becoming depressed and even listless. Writing gives me purpose and focus.

Aside from that, writing allows me to connect with the rest of the world. I hope that people read my poems, stories, and books and understand what I mean. I hope that I can connect with them.”

– John Brantingham