What are your writing motivators?
When I started writing I was motivated to write to escape school. It was a way to be someone else for a while and I got to explore my feelings in a constructive way. As a kid with an overactive imagination and no friends, writing was a great way to use that creativity and create the friends I didn’t have.
Later it changed to being a way to stand out. In high school I was known as Writer’s Craft because I always had my head in my laptop or in my notebook. Teachers took my notebooks, or my laptop because I was more focused on my writing then their lessons. I was an average student, but my motivation wasn’t on learning from talking heads. I was that student that would reteach herself stuff from reading information on the internet and that helped me get by. I was a kid that never fit in. I floated around, jumping between the band kids and the other creative crews. I couldn’t wait to get out of that school.
Then in university, writing became work. It was no longer for fun or for attention, or even a way to escape. I was studying English, which meant essays. A lot of essays. I wrote morning, noon, and night to the point I lost interest in it. My passion for writing dried up like my prospects of becoming a teacher in Ontario. When I graduated and became stressed due to my lacking job prospects, I had the ever growing need to escape but writing was still work for me. This was the time I suffered creative burnout.
That was until I lost someone I loved. Their death made me reassess my life. What would I regret if I was to die tomorrow? What would I do if I had only so many months to live?
I wanted to be a writer.
The dream of a fourteen-year-old lonely girl came whispering back into existence. I would regret not publishing the stories that I had been working my days on before higher education burnt me out.
I went back to my roots, writing everything that came to mind in a notebook. The ideas that I wrote began to grow into stories and soon the world that I had locked away behind essays and formal assignments came rushing back. I was reminded of the person I was by exploring the part of me I thought I lost.
The stories I wrote helped chase away the darkness. It allowed me to escape and be something else for a while. It helped shape my perception and in some cases, change my perception.
That became my new motivation.
Part of me hoped that writing would help others going through similar. People and the world are my motivators. Conflict, fear, pain, and sorrow touches us differently. In that, we find hope, love, success, determination, and empathy. I write to show that there is always another side to the darkness, and that it isn’t always people to bring you back from it, but your own strength that can lead you to the light. I wanted to show people they were stronger than their demons, and that there is a silver lining to those dark clouds. Thinking of how my work would help others like it helped me made me realize I wanted to write for others, not just for myself.
For the moment, I’m happy with that being my motivator. In time it will probably change. Life is consistent in that way, but change isn’t something to fear. Embrace your talents. Share them with the world. Be the lining to those clouds, and help bring the light back to someone’s world.