I started telling stories out of loneliness. I made my own make believe friends who would later become the characters in my first novel. I am so glad that I woke up one day and decided "I'm going to be a writer!" because I honestly think if I hadn't had made that decision I might have gotten really depressed as a child. High school and primary school were difficult for me. Escaping into writing saved me. It gave me something to focus on, something to think about, a goal. I would go to the library at lunch and read or pull out a notebook and hand write my latest novel.
I needed to write like I need air. For a long time growing up it was my dream to one day become as popular as JK Rowling. I was so determined to be a writer I couldn't think of anyone else I wanted to do. Nothing motivated me as much as writing did. It was my passion.
In my 20's I continued to write as much as I could. I would take notepads with me to work and do work during my breaks and on the ride home on the bus. I no longer dreamed of becoming the next JK Rowling though. I was older, wiser, and knew that it must be terribly stressful to be her and decided that I didn't want success and popularity to suck the fun out of writing. Writing slowly became less of a career choice and more of a simple hobby.
It was still an escape for me. I was still desperately lonely and without a lot of friends. Things are so different for me now. I am married, living out of home, and finally have a stable job! It's just a little office position, but it pays well, the people are lovely, and I'm happy.
Over the past year I have noticed I have been writing less and less. This has worried me and got me asking "Do I still want to do this anymore?" The answer is, of course, yes - but things ARE different for me now.
Writing used to occupy my whole world because there was only ME in it. Now I have my wonderful, loving, fun husband to share my world with. I've found that I am writing less and less these days because if I have a choice between trying to write, which is difficult, or curling up on the couch with my husband I will pick my husband.
I guess I am entering a different phase of my life as a writer. My muse is still there - the passion still there - it has just gone to a happy place. I no longer write out of loneliness or a desire to have friends. In the rare moments I decide to devote time to writing (usually on the weekends when the hubby is working!) I do it because something inside me is whispering "Write! write! write!"
I need that voice to talk to me. I can force myself to write, of course, but without that URGE to want to do it, that desire, it is not fun. It is hard, hard work. Like getting blood out of a stone.
I don't want to escape from the world anymore isn't that nice? At 28 I am finally happy, truly happy, in all aspects of my life. I write now for fun. It is a hobby. I don't expect to ever make any real money from it. I don't care anymore. I don't do it for that. I do it because when my characters sing to me it is the best feeling in the world. My blood tingles.
How much writing will I do in the future? I don't know. Between studying at university, working, and planning to get pregnant next year it might be that I will start to do less and less of it. But I don't think I will ever stop being a writer. I'm just in a phase of my life at the moment when it is not the most important thing for me. I need some inspiration. But I'm not going to go chasing it. Because I believe it is best to sit back and let it come to me. I have every faith in the world that it will too. Why? Because I am a writer. It doesn't matter if I write a dozen pages a day or a dozen words a week. As long as I have a love for the written word no one will be able to tell me I am not a writer.