Friday, 13 May 2016

Why I write

By Claire

This week an article of mine was published on gapyear.com, and I couldn't be happier!

It's my first gig as a writer; there was a discussion on the topic, a round of editing and I wrote my first invoice. I'm expecting a call from an agent seeking to represent me any day now.

Ok, not really. Gapyear.com source a lot of their content from people living the gap year experience and those with valuable perspectives and insights to give (even if we are back home now). But the fact that I was offered payment for my writing capabilities makes this assignment feel different. Yes I am just as passionate about this article as all the ones I've written before, but receiving payment makes me realise I have other opportunities open to me and my voice too.

Writing on the balcony on a sunny summer evening


I write to digest what's happened on a particular day, to solidify a memory for the future and to vocalise a thought or feeling on subjects. I write privately when I'm stressed and can't seem to talk it out; it's part of my healing process. I scribble my thoughts down in a sudden and sometimes surprising outpouring of emotion and suddenly the solutions become clear and I feel magically cleansed. Publicly I write to share an experience and offer my point of view, not because it is any more valid than anyone else's, but because I enjoy it. It's a wonderful way to share and find experiences and enriches my life. It's also a break from my norm, where a weekend walk turns takes on new purpose and I have more to think about than my usual work/gym/sleep routine during the week. 

Getting started can be hard; I've always written journals and diaries, but it's only once I became used to my voice that I was comfortable making my thoughts public, and I still wince sharing my blog with family and friends, even though it's only ever been met with complete support. 

I've always said "I write for me, not for you" as a form of protection. With this perspective, if someone doesn't like what I write, it's ok. I'm not expecting their support or praise, but it's nice to receive if they want to give it. I guess that's why this assignment is different. Without support, the article wouldn't be, and by choosing to publish it I am being given credit for my writing and validation of my views. There's nothing like endorsement to deliver motivation, which is why the minute I saw the published article, I couldn't wait to start composing the next one.  


iPhone notes; filled with scribbles when inspiration strikes
So thank you all. Thank you for reading, thank you for writing, and thank you for your support.

Till next time,  
Claire x