As I start this new course on writing, the first assignment-for-the-day that came to me was “I write because…”. After thinking about it for a couple of days, finally I managed to find a few reasons for my writing. (Please indulge me in my blatant narcissistic and self-centered attitude for the length of this course.)
So, why do I write?
I write because I communicate better in written word. I can describe a situation or tell an anecdote on paper in a better way. I get a chance to use better words that come to me after I have written the story. I can edit it, change the sequence or delete the part that comes across as irrelevant or unlikable or undesirable. There is no scope to do these things in talking. Talking is spontaneous; you cannot take a spoken word back. But it is different with writing- there can be literally hundreds of drafts before you finally decide to reveal The Perfect One to the world. Sure, the writing style differs from person to person, but whatever you present will be perfect in your eyes.
When I write, I try to come across as breezy, humorous, opinionated but cool, calm and open-minded – all the things I wish I was; as opposed to my spoken word where my jokes are usually badly timed, my demeanor is somewhat rigid, inflexible with a dash of low tolerance for irrationality, immorality, and lack of logic. I write because I want to be everything I wish I was, a better version of myself. And in the meantime, as work on being a better person, I can use my writing as a projection of the better version and hide behind it. I write to create an illusion of a better world, and most importantly, a better me.
I write because reality can be cruel. It is unchangeable, difficult to digest. But while writing, I can alter the event or sequence of events, I can increase or decrease the intensity of the emotions involved in the situation; I write to make the situation more acceptable and digestible. I can soften the blow of the cruel reality and sometimes, make it humorous.
Happy endings are elusive; and by the time we get to it, we are so tired and battered that we are unable to feel the happiness. I write because I want to feel the happiness and euphoria and nostalgia involved in the happy ending. And indeed, sometimes there are no happy endings. In that case, I write to create an imaginary happy ending. I write because sometimes I want to escape reality and have a romantic, happy ending.