When I get to be a world-famous, super rich novel writer and motivational speaker, I am sure at some press conference some cub reporter will ask me, “John, what books do you like to read?”I would love to say, “I would rather hunt a bear than read about someone else hunting a bear,” but I will name off the obligatory hot authors on that particular day, plus Ernest Hemingway and Mark Twain, and smile, waiting for the next question.*
I bet if you took a poll amongst writers, and asked the question:“Why do writers write?”most writers would say, “I write because I love to write.”I bet 80+ percent of the writers polled with this question would say they write because they love to write. I can buy this answer. It’s good corporate strategy, party line, so to speak. Never tell the truth when the suckers out there will buy something less. All us writers should stick together, I guess, just in case any non-writers are trying to trick us into blurting out some narcissistic comment that might make our sorority/fraternity look egocentric and vainglorious.It’s like a football coach using “coachspeak,” saying “Yeah, ole Podunk U is going to give my top-rated Auburn Tigers a rough time at our homecoming game on Saturday,” when the coach knows in reality his team will win by 60 points. A coach can’t really say “Yeah, I think we will beat them by 80 if I try to run up the score. You know, I should bet on our team.” But from a purely philosophical point of view, if writers write because they simply love to write, why are so many writers trying to get printed? Why do most of us, self included, clamor at the chance to get published? Why am I writing on this blog? If I purely enjoyed writing for the sake of writing, wouldn’t I just create this little piece and save it to my hard drive, for my eyes only? Why do I feel like someone needs, or cares to read it? Maybe writers have hidden agendas and rather large egos. Maybe the truthful answer to the question: “Why do writers write?”should be “I write because I love for people to read what I write.” When I was a sports journalist, nothing made me feel better than having someone say to me, “Hey Has, loved the column you wrote about the snail darters. Good stuff.”That used to put me on cloud nine. It was better than getting paid (I made about $12,000 as a sports writer way back in 1979).When someone comments on a blog I enter on RedRoom, I get all geeky and my mind (what is left of it) starts darting, stream of consciousness from thought to thought: “Here goes the popularity roller coaster . . . oh yeah baby! I am unstoppable now . . . John Grisham you better look out, here comes Big Johnny . . . Juan Grande . . . you can’t stop me! No one can stop me.”And then I check my RR dashboard stats and notice that only 8 people hit on my blog site that day and then I sink back to the question: “Why do writers write?” I do believe we write because we truly love it, but I also believe we write hoping that someone will read it. I also think there may be the little caveat of getting a paycheck with our writing that really turns on a lot of us. Can you imagine what an adrenalin shot it would be to write something that millions of people would actually pay money to read? It would be better than an ice-cold Budweiser. *I actually stole that line about the bear from a good friend of mine, Charlie VanValkenburg. He's famous and that's what he tells reporters. Thanks Charlie, I told you I would use it one day.
Causes John Haslam Supports
I support the Constitution of the United States of America.
I support St. Jude's Hospital.
I believe in GOD.