Why I Write

This is all out stolen. Not plagiarized. Just stolen.

But at least it’s referenced. I’m giving credit to Leigh McLeroy, one of my all-time favorite authors. I got this email from her recently and I loved every word.

It describes why I write– because I must.


Why I Write   

From my first Big Chief tablet with its pale blue, alternating solid and dotted lines, I’ve long been smitten with empty pages.

I can think of few things more inviting than a pristine, buff colored piece of paper–except perhaps the same page, filled with words.

I started writing young–a word nerd from the get-go–and I never stopped. I was writing poetry at eight. Short stories to entertain myself at 10. I wrote out my prayers and filled up journal after journal through high school and college, where I was….wait for it…a journalism major who took literature classes for easy A’s.

I’m often asked now, as someone who writes for a living, “How do you become a writer?” My answer is always the same: Writers write. They don’t simply dream of writing, or plan to write someday, or talk of writing, or read books about how to get published or “build a platform.” They sit down before an empty page or screen and paint with words whatever insistent image beats its wings against the mind and heart, fighting to get free.

They write because they have to. Need to. Must.

If I never sold another piece, or landed another book contract, or received another assignment, the sight of a Big Chief tablet (or its grown-up cousin, the Moleskine) and the smell of a few sharpened pencils would still make my heart beat faster.Why wouldn’t it? I follow a God whose story never gets old. The sky-wide arc of creation–fall–redemption–restoration lies at the heart of every true and beautiful story, because it’s the echo of His story. He makes all things new, and in Him, all things hold together.

And let’s face it: all the Big Chief tablets in the world set end-to-end cannot contain the ways to say “He loves you” to a world that needs to hear. So I write.

There are so many other things Jesus did. If they were all written down, each of them, one by one, I can’t imagine a world big enough to hold such a library of books. (John 21:25, The Message)

© Leigh McLeroy, 2013

1 comment / Add your comment below

  1. I get that. People ask me why I don’t use someone elses Bible studies instead of writing my own material. Aren’t I reinventing the wheel? I write because I must. It’s how I learn. Just reading someone elses study doesn’t teach me what God does by studying His word and writing the lessons myself. So in my way, I too write because I must.
    Keep writing!!

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