During the Q & A section of last night's New Jersey Authors' Network event in Manchester, NJ, someone in the audience (his name was Jerry (or Gerry)) asked an excellent question.
"Why do you write?"
My first response was, "Because it's fun."
He wanted more. "I get that, but why do you do all that editing and rewriting. What drives you?"
After thinking about it some more, I said, "Because I want to read the kind of books I write."
I'm not sure what Gerry thought of my answer. I certainly didn't mean it in a vain or 'I write for myself, and I don't care if nobody else likes it' way.
There's a certain style of writing that I love. The mixture of daft, clever humor, combined with a serious, sometimes touching story and character development found in Terry Pratchett's Guards or Witches novels (from his Discworld series) falls nicely into that category. There are others, like Harry Harrison's Stainless Steel Rat series, Douglas Adams, and to certain extent, Neil Gaiman, whose books I'll gladly read again and again.
I'm not self-deluded enough to believe my writing's in the same league as theirs, but I'm working on it (the writing, not the self-delusion). In the meantime, I 'll continue to try my darndest to write the kind of books I love to read.
How about you?
Why do you write?