Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Why Prolific Writers Write

I read the Midnight Disease to find out why some people write so much. Here are the options.

  1. Biology. An overabundance of neurotransmitters in the synapses of our limbic system influences our temporal lobes.
  2. Vocation. We have a sense of mission and we desire to propagate truth, beauty, humor.
  3. Hypergraphia. Like the workaholic, there’s a psychodynamic urge to write and we just can’t quit.
  4. Suffering. Misery shared is half the misery.
  5. Temperament. The artist in us “gets pleasure from the praise of complete strangers.”
  6. Post partum disorder. (Um, not for all of us).
  7. A visitation. One receives inspiration from the muse like receiving dictation by an outside source.
  8. Imago dei. Being created in the image of a communicating God prompts us to communicate as well. Well, not as well, but in stumbling imitation.
  9. Depression. Introspection is a very writerly trait.
  10. Compulsive memoirism. This is the fuel behind most blogs.
  11. Money (fame, fortune).
  12. Self therapy. “Language was the first mood altering experience” (p. 200).
  13. Self knowledge. “How do I know what I think until I see what I say?” (p. 218).

My hunch is that people with the compulsion to write a lot combine several of these motivations. What drives you to write?

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