Is Your Reason for Writing Wrong?

Everyone has a reason for writing. As I have often suggested here, everyone has a story to tell and everyone should do just that. But is there a wrong reason to write a book?

Jim Fletcher writes, “In the giant metaphorical landfill where most published books go to die, there is a strong common denominator: hubris.”

You see, as in film and music, many write to seek fame and fortune. Nothing wrong with making money — and making a living doing something you enjoy — but there should be some deeper fundamental causing moving you. Maybe to “elevate the life experience” of the readers? Fletcher quotes the famous Mark Twain line, “Write without pay until somebody offers pay.” I take that to mean: Pursue your dream until it happens.

Fletcher also writes on authors being seen as “cash cows” and expected to turn out sequels in rapid succession. This is no different than film and television, but indie publishing allows writers — the thoughtful ones — to make their own schedule. Of course, the caveat for even them is, don’t wait too long or your fans will forgot about you.

Ultimately, we all decide what our reasons are for whatever we do. Perhaps having a reason — any reason — is winning the first battle of a long war.

A war to win at telling our stories.

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