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Why I Write Stories

I’m sitting at a frozen yogurt (let’s be real, it’s pretty much ice cream) place staring at a blank document. I’m listening to Band of Horses. It’s the right soundtrack after a funeral. I turn to a worn copy of One Hundred Years of Solitude. I re-read the first ten pages, because I need a reminder that there is so much magic around if I’m paying attention.

And this is why I write. It won’t be Band of Horses and it won’t be Gabriel Garcia Marquez and it won’t even be written for an adult audience, but this is still why I write.

I realize that art is an escape, but is that such a bad thing? What are we escaping from? What are we escaping to? I need a reminder, in art, in fiction, in music, about what is real and what is true and what is beautiful.

I put the book down and yearn for a different story. Something magical. Something with hope. Something that taps into a desire that’s been inside of me for my entire life. I start thinking about this book I want to read and realize it’s not there. It’s still not there, because it’s a story that I am going to write. It’s that pesky Keeper of the Creatures that I still can’t manage to re-write.

I stare at the blank document. I still can’t decide how to begin this revision. It needs to start differently. But I want to write this story. I want to make something that I would want to read. I want to make something that my kids will seek out on a day like today when they want to be away so that they can be more present.

This is why I write. This is why I sketch. This is why I dream up worlds that don't exist. It's because it's the only way for me to make sense out of this one.

Professor of Instructional Technology
I want to see kids embrace creativity. As a teacher, this meant murals, documentaries, STEM camps, and coding projects. As a dad, this has meant elaborate pillow forts and home-made pinball machines and the story of non-magical wizard who makes robots. It's also why I co-founded Write About. Interested in having me speak or consult on design thinking and creativity? Visit my speaking page and fill out the contact form at the bottom. I'll get back to you within 24 hours.

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