Thursday, August 30, 2007

Writing for No Good Reason

For years, I was a desk drawer writer. I happily scribbled away, tucking the finished or unfinished projects away in a desk drawer. I was writing because it was fun, and I wrote anything I wanted without caring if it was publishable or good. Then my daughter’s mentor got to me and made me start sending my work out.

Things changed that day. The changes were both good and bad. The good is that I began to be more professional, carefully researching the markets and writing what was publishable, finishing and editing each project I started.

The bad is that I began to be more professional, carefully researching the markets and writing what was publishable, finishing and editing each project I started.

After a while I started selling what I wrote and a career was launched, but some of the joy disappeared in the process. I was no longer writing anything I wanted. I soon enough learned there were things I didn’t yet have the talent to write professionally, so even though I loved writing them, I stopped. My limited work schedule didn’t allow for unpublishable writing time. Writing was now a job.

After a time, the spirit instructed me to stop writing for publication, other than my weekly column. My family would be needing my undivided attention for a time, without the stress of a professional writing career. For the next eight years, I was a full-time homeschooling mom, but I wrote once again for fun. I nabbed rare moments to write things that would never sell because I was born about eighty years too late for them to be marketable. I fooled around with a mystery and made the characters intentionally silly beyond sensibility.

Writing was just for fun again.

Now I’m back at work and I’m trying not to lose sight of the real purpose for being a writer. The real purpose is to have fun. It doesn’t pay enough to write for any other reason. So, I want to balance my professional work with the just-for-fun scribbling I love.

Where did I put that silly mystery? I had an idea…

3 comments:

David G. Woolley said...

Terrie: I love your wonderful eye for pearls of wisdom. Well done.

T. Lynn said...

Reading all these posts makes me want to open my desk drawer again and I haven't thought about doing that for a long time. :) I love the new blog format. Thanks for all the effort to re-ignite this site!

Miss Amy said...

Terrie, I agree with your pearls of wisdom.

I am one of the lucky ones that get to hear them on a daily basis.

Looking forward to reading all your silly novels that are stuck in your desk drawers.