Today is The National Day On Writing.  No, really, it is.  It was officially declared to be so by the Congress, so you know it's for real, and it's sponsored by the National Council of Teachers of English.  To mark the day, they have posed a question to the world, or at least the world of writers (that would be our world): Why Do You Write?

I love this question, and I love the answers it brings.  We had a wonderful six-word memoir contest (inspired by the six-word memoir project at Smith Magazine) on this very subject, and I invite you all to answer it in a new form on She Writes today: tell us why you write in 140 characters or less.  That way you can get in on the action (if you are a Twitter user) by tweeting your answer as well and marking it with the hashtag #whyiwrite.  Our friends at the YA site are participating, as is the The New York Times Learning Network and many others, so we will all be in very good company.

My answer?

Writing is my leap of faith in the face of impermanence and loss, my hope that it is possible to ease pain by speaking truth. #whyiwrite 

(Amen, Rahna.)

What's yours?

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Comment by Lucille Joyner on October 21, 2011 at 3:59am

We can't explain why we write. For us, it's just another form of breathing, and if you stop breathing, you die.

Comment by Barbara Romney Galler on October 20, 2011 at 9:34pm

I write letters to the editor to touch my community, letters to family, again, to touch them. I write poetry to find my deeper self and thereby touch the universe.

Comment by Linda Cordes on October 20, 2011 at 8:46pm
I write because I love sharing my thoughts and experiences with others, and I love the way writing makes me feel.
Comment by Suma Narayan on October 20, 2011 at 8:10pm

I write because I can't help myself:there are so many things I want to say that 'polite' society would not allow me , that I have no choice but to write.


Comment by Melissa Ann Goodwin on October 20, 2011 at 7:58pm
Because I just saw a picture of a 7 year old girl reading my book while walking down the sidewalk. That's why.
Comment by Mary Caswell on October 20, 2011 at 7:43pm

well -- I'm going to blow out the 144 characters challenge and I don't care
that I've already lost since I don't like rules and restrictions (while I
respectively believe in them) but let's face it...a given, I'm not going to win
-- the world is too big and there are way too many talented people out there..
In any event. This was my response (and I tried initially to stay within the
rules but...typically it quietly exploded)

Because it's the only secret place I can bare my soul...and I can choose to share with others or keep it safe to my heart because sometimes rejection hurts just too much. I need to learn to trust again. I have a handful of
people who fit the bill, but haven't met the one who deserves the entire
repertoire and should be in my life with no holds bared..and so I hide and write only for myself. And I end up crying a lot because I want to destroy what I write...but I can't bring myself to do it.  Which makes me hide even
more.  And it hurts because I think I met that one who could bridge my soul to his...but he's just as lost as I am and so there you go.  Life.  All I can do is laugh.  Or cry. 

Comment by T. K. Thorne on October 20, 2011 at 6:52pm
Why do I write?  The answer to this question lies in a place so deep, I would drown before I reached it.
Comment by Susan V. Weiss on October 20, 2011 at 6:51pm

When I write, I am breathing, feeling, thinking, wondering, moving, resting, being—all at once, a mind, body and soul united.

Comment by Diane McElwain on October 20, 2011 at 6:38pm
I write because I have to. The child in me never grew up and wants to explore all it's possibilities. Forgetting if I am good at it or not, it is creative release that brings peace.
Comment by Cindy Brown on October 20, 2011 at 5:58pm

I write because I feel something intense. Then when someone else reads it, feels its intensity, and tells me so, I want to write even more.


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