Surf the World Wide Web for why authors write and you’ll find a plethora of responses which range all over the literary map. For instance, Harper Lee said: “Any writer worth his salt writes to please himself. It’s a self-exploratory operation that is endless.” A perusal of over fifty author ruminations on “why” revealed a self-serving common denominator: novelists seem to write for themselves. Anyone reading this can survey the quotes online for affirmation of this observation.
To be sure, there is some sense of self-satisfaction or personal pleasure almost always experienced by a wordsmith. Given that acknowledgement, my answer to the question is simply that I hope to provide readers with a good reading experience . . . one that enhances their lives. Other adjectives which I hope apply to my stories are: enlivening, informative, gratifying, engaging, rewarding, and the like. They all point at my hope for the reader. In surveying quotes, W.H. Auden came the closest to my intentions when he quoted: “The aim of writing is to enable readers a little better to enjoy life”
If I had a buck for every page I have read over the past sixty years I would be a millionaire. Reading has always been an integral part of my life which has contributed a tremendous amount of pleasure and education. For the last decade before my first professional literary endeavor, a thought kept reoccurring: perhaps I can do for others what so many have done for me.
Writing my first novel, Bazo, was indeed pleasurable; a totally joyous experience. So, sure, I get something out of crafting a book. But far and away my primary motive is the reader’s enrichment. Put simply, if my readers feel a sense of satisfaction and time well spent on the pages, mission accomplished!
A host of variable reasons for writing can produce good books. I’m counting on my motivation being one of them.