Sunday, May 13, 2007

Why I write Poetry, Fantasy, and Science Fiction

For the good of mankind (a.k.a. World peace:-)? Nope, I'm not that high-minded.
Entrepreneurship? Perhaps, but only in my wild, uncharted dreams. You can't start a business if you've no drive to see it through, especially with something so tricky and misunderstood a skill as writing.
Entertainment ? Closer to the truth, but not the whole of the answer.
Excellence? Closer still, but again, too high and lofty.

In truth, elements of all four and one more small factor send my fingers pounding my poor, much abused, way overused keyboard. Fact and factor: I can't not write. Not to be melodramatic or anything, but the stories, poems, phrases, dialogue, scenes, scenarios, climaxes, and characters haunt me. You might call it obsessive; I call it sanity preservation.

Good: I've no delusions of grandly changing the course of history, but I am also well aware of the daunting power words hold over people. With this new technology-dominated age letter writing has fallen by the wayside, it is my secret wish to one day use my poems to reach people in need of encouragement. Here's the kicker - I want to write real letter with hand-written poems. Logistics might be difficult, but I'm working on that. While not unduly hard, my life has been full of both blessings and growth-inducing experiences. Poetry has preserved these moments. Now, I wish to turn them into something good, for one smile is worth a hundred long nights and bouts of hand cramps.

Money: Eh, money ain't everything. It certainly makes things easier, but if money were my first goal in writing, I'd have quit long ago. I'm still learning and growing as a writer and as a person. This addiction to an underestimated art form has already cost me hours of my life, and I wouldn't trade the world to take a moment back.

Entertainment: The big reason, the core, the foundation, whatever analogy you wish to use. I write fantasy and science fiction mostly because it entertains me, but hopefully, it entertains those who read it.

Excellence: Ah, there might be a slight bit of control freak in me that comes out when I write. One of the most entertaining bits about fiction writing in general is the ability to take a jumble of concepts and characters and make them beautiful. Does it surprise you that sometimes the characters write themselves? Sometimes it's painful to write an ending because for all the world you wish it could be different, but the series of events leave only sad logical endings. Is this a study of life? Perhaps. From childhood, I was taught to strive for excellence in all things. So I will write, and write some more, and if no other good but a more sensitive, intelligent me comes of it than such is the way and will of things. All glory to God anyhow.