Why are you writing?
A question I have just asked myself and I will ask you.
There are countless reasons why we choose to write, whether that is for fame, money or to share what we have learned with others, in the hope of helping them.
Answer honestly why you are writing, and hopefully the answer will help understand if you can make it in the long term.
It would be a little rude to ask you the question without answering it myself
A question that should not be hard to answer, but has taken me a while to answer honestly. I will break it down into 3 main reasons, as I am finding it difficult to pin down to just one answer.
- To help
A little bit of a strange reason, but hear me out! What I mean is over the last few years and especially within my marketing career, I have learned so much from others. From Authors like Seth Godin to Gary Vaynerchuk, and it is a feeling of guilt behind one of my reasons for writing.
Taking everything I have learned from others, has helped me massively so far in my career, and I am sure will continue to do so. However, keeping lessons I have learned to myself and not sharing with others, not only makes me feel guilty but that I should also be sharing what I have learned with the hope of providing the same help I have got from others.
This is one of the main ones for me, if you are doing something you might as well do something you enjoy and love. From experience, I have tried several different things.
What I have learned is when I do not truly enjoy something, it is hard to stick with, especially during those days when you’re not feeling 100% motivated. With writing, however, it is different, no matter what my mood, when I start typing I get a feeling of enjoyment.
It is almost therapeutic.
If you enjoy something, then sticking with it through both the good and bad times, becomes so much easier. It becomes less of a chore, and almost part of you, as strange as that sounds!
I by no means claim to be a great person, but I am trying. When I was younger up to my early 20s I didn’t really know what I wanted to do with my life. In terms of a professional career, I was not fully aware of what was out there.
So I write in part to help the younger me, both the boy who didn’t know what he wanted to be, all the way to the man starting out in marketing who had so much to learn.
I hope that by in part sharing what I have learned in my career to date, and what I continue to learn, I can help others. Help people solve problems or come up with new ideas based on what has worked for me.
So, why are you writing?
If you can’t answer with a single answer, jot down several reasons why you are writing and keep them with you, whether that be in a notebook or on a digital app such as Notion.
This isn’t some hack or way to become a better writer, and may not even help at all with your writing. What I hope it will do, is allow you to be honest with yourself. Help you understand if this is something worth doing and provide more focus each time you write.
If I’m writing something and I am not enjoying it, or it ends up not providing anyone with real value or help, then it’s worth having a quick review of yourself and your writing to get back on track.
“Very few people or companies can clearly articulate WHY they do WHAT they do. By WHY I mean your purpose, cause or belief — WHY does your company exist? WHY do you get out of bed every morning? And WHY should anyone care?”
Ask yourself why.