Why write? Well since you asked…


Note: Today’s post is courtesy of a prompt from “642 Things to Write About“. Today’s prompt is: “Why you write.”

I was flipping through the “642 Things” book this morning when I realized I’d forgotten to write today’s post, and this was the prompt that I randomly flipped to. It made me chuckle a little because of all the 642 prompts in this book, this is probably the easiest one for me to answer.

It all started (she said, ceremoniously) when I was in the third grade, and it started in an odd kind of way. You see, one night I was having trouble sleeping. I must have gotten out of bed and been playing with my toys or something, because I woke up my father. He came in my room to tuck me back into bed and I complained to him that I couldn’t get to sleep. I can remember, plain as day, he told me to close my eyes and just think about my day, play it in my head like a movie, and eventually I’d drift to sleep. I nodded and he went back to his room, and I closed my eyes. But I didn’t think about my day. I thought about more fantastical things. I imagined myself in a crazy story, with monsters and heroes and lots of fun and danger. And eventually, I fell asleep.

That became my nighttime routine. Every night I would imagine myself in a “movie” in my head. Sometimes I’d be fighting alongside my favorite superheroes, sometimes I’d be the damsel in distress, and sometimes I’d just think of the craziest thing I could imagine. I enjoyed making up these stories in my head so much that sometimes I’d wake up in the morning actually excited to get to bed that night.

Then I found a better outlet, thanks to a school assignment. We were to write an original short story, paste it on construction paper, draw a cover, and bind it all together. I nailed that assignment, let me tell you. I couldn’t tell you for the life of me what the story was about, but I can tell you that I called it, “The Mystery of the Emerald-Eyed Cat”, and I drew two creepy green cat eyes on my cover, and I got an excellent grade.

That was the first real story I ever wrote, and it started one hell of a lifelong desire. In those early days, and for many years afterward, I mostly wrote stories featuring myself and my friends, because I was basically writing down my nighttime “movies”, but as time went on I moved on to fan-fiction and more professional fiction as well, and the rest is pretty much history.

So why exactly do I write? Because, to be honest, I’m still that little girl laying in bed trying to get to sleep. It may sound funny to people who have trouble sleeping because they think too much, but I still lull myself to sleep by telling myself stories in my head, and these days those stories are the scenes for the books that I write. Playing those thoughts and ideas through my head every night is something that I think I’ll always do, and as a result I think that I’ll always write because since that first story I’ve always felt the need to get the thoughts out of my head and onto the paper. ❤

3 thoughts on “Why write? Well since you asked…

  1. Awesome story Tracey! I live writing, too. Perhaps I’ll have to revive my blog now. I bet you have some wicked children’s books hidden in your head!

    • You know, my father’s been bugging me for years to write children’s books, but I never thought I had it in me. I get too much enjoyment out of writing super emotional stuff that is way outside the range of what’s suitable for kids. But maybe someday I’ll be able to calm myself down a bit and write something for my little missy. ^_~

  2. I started writing seriously and on a regular basis on the advice of a high school English teacher who claimed to have seen some undiscovered talent in me. Then after graduating high school, I immediately started a website (HTML in those days), and since then, the rest is history.

    I’m a huge fan of Moleskine, and all of my writing is done by hand, regardless of whether or not it ends up on my blog.

    Not trying to make anyone sad here, but I survived a very tumultuous and traumatic childhood, and writing helped me cope.

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