Almost four years ago I wrote this post, The Reasons Why. It lead to Light My Way – A Creative Manifesto. It was first and foremost an exploration of why I write. It also examined why others write.
This is my manifesto:
I write because I want to tell a story, but not just any story.
I write because I want to tell the story of those who are not heard.
I write because I want to tell the story of those who cannot speak.
I write because I want to tell the story of those who are disempowered.
I write because I want to tell the story for those who cannot.
I write because I believe that telling a person’s story is integral in understanding who they are.
I create art to speak into the darkness, that I may be a light for others to ignite their own flame and walk clearly.
The other night I was talking with my collaborator, Jodi, via Skype and she was discussing her social media sabbatical. Part of the sabbatical involved a three-week camping trip to the middle of nowhere in Central Queensland, without phone reception. It allowed her time to revisit the fundamental question of “Why do I write?”
For her, the stripped back existence allowed her to return to what it was about writing that inspired and motivated her.
Every so often we need to pause where we are and revisit why we write and see if it still aligns with the vision we had. It may need a revision, a realignment, a reappraisal, a reworking.
If you’ve moved away from the core reason for writing, you’ve lost vision.
I returned to my creative manifesto and asked if these were still the reasons I wrote. I am pleased to respond in the affirmative. It’s a good check, perhaps once every six months or once a year, to reevaluate why you write to ensure you are aiming to produce the best work you can.
Why do you write? Have you made a revision of your purpose?