At the age of 28, my party years are behind me. I’m single, have no kids, and on occasion, tactfully blow off friends on the weekends to sit at home in seclusion. “You’re wasting your life.” A friend candidly said after I refused a party invitation (turns out a giant adult sized water-slide was ordered, perhaps a once in a lifetime opportunity). So, the thought embedded itself, leading me to consider the possibility he was right.
I’m not a recluse, shy, or antisocial. I just enjoy, cherish, solitude. It complements writing; in fact I doubt many writers would disagree. There has to be a desire to be alone in order to write. Still, the question lingers. Is it a waste of time?
Most writers, even talented ones, may never get published in the traditional sense – acquiring an agent or editor. But I think this is where my perspective differs from that of my friend’s. Now, I would be lying if I said being published is not a dream, a goal I strive to achieve, but it’s not why I write.
Having a voice, being creative, a love for language: are all elements that move me to write, and are almost clique among writers. Above everything, the thing that inspires me is the hope that a group of people, even a minuscule sliver of readers, will want to read what is concocted in my mind. To me, that is validating, and if I’m honest, my worst fear.
Regardless how crippling this fear may seem at times, in truth, it’s insignificant. If after six months a book I have written is so terrible that no one will pay to read it, I’ll just give it away; if it’s free, who wouldn’t at least crack the virtual binding and skim the first few pages?