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By Johannes Helmold

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writers' questionsLately, I have been thinking about why some people become (or want to become, or think they want to become) writers. In my life, I used to organize several literary clubs, and people who visited the meetings seemed to be sure in the coolness of writers. However, when asked about their motives, their answers mostly sounded like, “It’s cool,” or “I don’t wanna work in the office,” or “Chicks like writers.”

These memories made me think further—not just about the motives that push people towards becoming writers, but also about the questions any writer, in my opinion, should ask himself or herself. Here are some of them:

1. Why am I doing this? Am I trying to impress hypothetical “chicks,” or following the call of my heart?

2. Whom I am doing this for? Is it going to be writing for myself, or I am going to try to publish my writing?

3. What is my goal? Money? Fame? Self-realization? Recognition? Sharing my ideas with other people?

4. Am I going to make it my profession, or it’s my hobby? If it’s my profession, am I ready to work as a writer for a long time?

5. Can I deal with critique? How do I stand in the midst of failure?

I think these questions cover the main points any writer should clarify to understand themselves. Answering them may not guarantee success or recognition, but it can definitely help a beginning writer find his or her way.

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