TERRY ANN MARSH
From Premise to Published: WHY are you writing?
Updated: May 25, 2022
FIGURING OUT YOUR WHY.
Are you educating, explaining, defending, entertaining, promoting, attacking?
Are you writing for money, for fame, for posterity? Are you writing because you have a talent and you want to find a useful way to use that skill or, are you writing because you can’t help but write – it must be written and you don’t care how many read it or even if it gets published.
Do you write for one or a million and one?
“Writing” is a big category. Having the answers to some of these questions might help you be a bit more pointed about what you hope to accomplish. For me, it was a natural extension of what I was already doing. As a children’s entertainer, I wrote songs and stories all the time for my own show. After about eight years of writing, editing, re-writing, perfecting, submitting, and so on, I found myself in a contract with Brandylane Publishers for my first picture book, The Three Little Sprigs, set to be released this July.
But, before I began, I asked myself the same questions, starting with why? Here are my answers:
I do not write for money – although I’ll be happy to see it if it comes my way. Obviously, if I make money, it means people are buying my books!
I do not write for fame. I’m too old for that and I just don’t care.
I write for as many as will read it, and I hope they like it enough to share it when they are done.
As a writer of children’s books, I hope to entertain and educate – there! That's why I write. I have something to say, and for right now, I speak to kids. This was the same premise I used for my kids’ shows. I did a skit about sharing, a story about reading, a song about attitudes, and, of course, I tried to be as entertaining as possible. After all, a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down!
So, my writer friends, take a few minutes and ask yourself – WHY am I writing?