Why I write

Every Tuesday morning, I kiss my kids good-bye, I gather my computer, and I drive to my favorite local cafe. I order my coffee and find a seat by itself. Then I labor with words for several hours, pushing my mind to the edge of its skill. Whenever the calendar says it’s Tuesday I do this, whether or not I feel inspired. It is my weekly discipline, a rhythm I have come to treasure.
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Why do I set aside a day for writing every week?

For the love of it. In mid-2015, something changed. For the first time, I had a desire to write. I wanted to. Through my undergrad English major, desire had never been part of it. Suddenly it was. No longer did I want simply to read, but I itched to write, too. And after fifty-one blog posts and a handful of articles, that desire has not waned. It has only quickened. I hunger now to put words to page every week. To labor over phrases that express my thoughts with precision. I find joy in the craft. And in this joy, I discern a call.

To start conversations. To spark laughter. As my fifty-one blog posts suggest, I have many thoughts. I am brimming with ideas and opinions. Too brimming, some might say.

I want to talk about all those ideas, start interesting conversations, make people laugh. I imagine us together–my readers and me–some vigorously nodding, others shaking their heads, each jumping in to rebut and modify, everyone grinning and chuckling. There is little I love more than an engaging conversation. This is a way to start one.

Last weekend at the Festival of Faith and Writing, I heard author Leslie Leyland Fields say

The world never has enough thoughtful, beautiful writers who speak out of love.

That is what I am trying to be. Not because I have some precise goal–getting a book contract, becoming well known, being featured in a big magazine–but because I believe there is value in thoughtful, beautiful writing. And there is value in attentive, stimulating conversations. Who knows, those other things may come someday, but they do not drive me. The craft and the conversation drive me.

I treasure every comment my readers make–in the blog comments, in person, on Facebook. It is a great honor whenever a friend shares one of my posts on social media. I know how many articles they have to choose from and what it means that that they have publicly endorsed my words.

I am writing to be read, and so I thank you for reading. Please keep engaging me. Tell me what you think. If I write words that you find beautiful or true or important, share them. Help me push the conversation wider.

Whenever I hit publish, I am trusting that “my words will go out wherever God is pleased to send them,” as Leslie Leyland Fields said last weekend. What joy!

 

©Laura Goetsch and Thinking About Such Things, 2016.

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10 thoughts on “Why I write

  1. Kristen Johnson

    These strike me as beautiful and important reasons to write. As someone who writes primarily for deadlines, and not with any other consistency, I have marveled at, and learned from, your weekly discipline. Thanks for sending your words our way so regularly and winsomely.

    Like

  2. Started my blog right after graduating from seminary. Got tired of just writing God thoughts for my professors and figured a blog might reach a slightly larger audience. Glory to God for your ritual and may you grow in your craft and ability to express.

    Like

  3. Pingback: Why I don’t write at home – Thinking about such things

  4. Pingback: A question for my readers – Thinking about such things

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