I don’t actually want you to answer this question here, on my blog. I don’t need to know your answer to this question – but you need to know your answer.
Are you writing to find readers who will enjoy what you have written?
Or are you writing to sell books and make money?
These two reasons are not the only two that spur people on to write a book or a short story or a poem – but they’re usually the two that come up most often when writers consider why they write.
Neither are they mutually exclusive of each other. You might be writing for both reasons – to find readers who will then buy your book so you can make money. That’s okay, too.
I’m not trying to make any judgements here. What I want to say is that, if you are honest with yourself as to why you write, you may become more comfortable with the process and be able to just get on with the work of creating.
I stop and ask myself this question on a regular basis, especially when book sales are lagging (as they seem to have done throughout the publication periods of both my novel and novella). So I decide to let go of the money part of the answer and am satisfied when I hear that one more person has discovered my writing, or has recommended my novel to a friend, or makes a favourable comment about me on social media, or asks when the next book will be published. That goes a long way to making me realize that this, for me, finding new readers for my books, is the best reward for having put my words out there in public.
And while it might be nice to realize some remuneration for all the time and effort I put into honing my craft and producing my publications, the reality is that I will never make enough money to actually cover all the expenses of that. So I’ve decided to chill out, step back, and not concern myself with sales.
Besides, you just can’t put a price on receiving a positive review, especially when it comes from someone you don’t know. That, to me, is the icing on the writing cake! My books have touched someone enough that they want to tell me, and their friends, that they enjoyed them.
That’s why I write.