Why I Write

I want to share something with you today. It is something very close to my heart, and it’s very meaningful to me. I’ve had a dream of being a writer, of one kind or another, since I was in the last few years of college. Before then, writing was just something I did. It wasn’t a passion, just a simple hobby that I had a proficiency at. I was such an avid reader that my imagination could not help but be vivid in translation to writing. I wasn’t trained or skilled, and it was often haphazard and always unfinished. I really regret that I didn’t apply myself to writing back then. I would come up with some crazy idea, and then it would float away on the wind, because I didn’t write it down. I can hear those lost ideas as echoes in my memories. They are the empty sounds of thoughts unrealized, and I wish I had written them down. So, let me tell you about how I did come to realize that writing is a part of who I am. There were two instances where I found outlets for my writing, and they really ignited my passion for it.

When I went to college, I really had no idea what to do with myself. I was basically focused on playing football, and making good enough grades to be eligible. I chose criminal justice, because it seemed like the most interesting thing to me. A year and a half later, and I switched to education. I thought that maybe teaching or coaching might be better for me. I stuck with that for a year before they dropped the secondary education program. I had no interest in teaching below high school, so I started looking for another major. Again. At the time, I was in an English class taught by the Journalism advisor, and she was always asking me to join the school newspaper. I was really noncommittal on it, so I didn’t join. Enter Vince Davis, one of my best friends from college. He, as a newly converted journalism major, talked me in to it. I fell in love with writing for the newspaper. I felt at home with it. When my football career ended, writing gave me hope for a future. Vince and I took over that newspaper. Hell, we even talked the local newspaper, The Muskogee Phoenix, into paying us to take a trip to Dallas to cover the college baseball team. It was a great time, and I found something I really enjoyed. I started working part time at the Phoenix as a sports writer/photographer. I had several pieces featured on the front page of the sports section, and I even got to be the official Bacone College correspondent. It wasn’t paying much, but it was an experience. Eventually, reality handed me a check saying I needed to either start working four jobs instead of three, or I needed to swing by the military recruiting stations. Obviously, I chose the latter since I am serving in the Navy nowadays. I will never forget when I discovered that writing is something that makes me feel empowered, and when I realized that eventually I wanted to do it for a living.

Growing up, I didn’t really know my sister, Christel, very well. We shared the same father, but she lived with her mom, and she was nine years my senior (SHE’S 40! SHE’S GOING TO KILL ME WHEN SHE READS THIS!). I saw her a few times in my youth, and while we did have things in common, we didn’t keep in touch very well. I won’t go in to details, but eventually we realized that we needed to get to know each other, and so we did. We would talk more often, and one day, she mentioned this thing called a blog. So I looked in to this mysterious invention, and realize that I needed one. Not only did I realize I needed one, I realized that my sister had the same sort of connection with writing as I did. I came to realize that Townsends can be quite eloquent when we want to be. I started small, and my blogs came and went over time. I don’t think I was really ready to be a dedicated blogger at that point in my life. Things were always transitional, and I never felt very comfortable sharing with the world. I think I felt like I would never live up to the way that Christel was able to blog so confidently, which was stupid, of course. Blogging is not a competition, but it is a personal journey that you choose to share with the world, and if you don’t feel confident, you won’t be able to be consistent. So, ten years after my first attempt at blogging, I am finally ready to be a grown up blogger. I think. Well, I’m ready to give it a shot.

So, why am I blogging again? What has brought me back to writing, and sharing with the world?

I miss it. I miss being able to write and put my ideas out. I feel like I made a lot of excuses along the way to not write, and it is either now or never to get the ball rolling. The past year or so, I have been trying to pull story ideas out of my head for novels. They are mostly of the fantasy fiction genre, but lately, I have been focusing on simply pulling everything out that I can. I get stuck sometimes, but that is where blogging has helped, and I am also going to get in to journaling as well. Sometimes you just need good old-fashioned pen and paper. I want to realize the dream of writing for a living. I don’t want to do the military thing forever, and I don’t want to work in a job where I won’t be happy. I want to pursue something that will give me satisfaction and I will feel accomplished. This is my dream. I want to be a writer, and this blog is where it starts.

So, if you want to help me out, tell your friends to come check out the blog. Leave comments and ideas. I love reaching out to new people, and I love knowing that they are reading my thoughts and stories. I want to keep this blog growing, and I want to stick with it long term. I want to keep writing as much as possible, and to keep building to the point where I can really support my family with it. I want to write novels and stories, and be able to share the incredible ideas I have running around in my head with the world. One person that I really have to thank for inspiration is my wife, Emily. She is currently chasing her dream of being a professional violist, and I’ve taken so much joy in watching her work so hard for that. It made me realize that I needed to find my dream again and pursue it as well. I thank everyone who has helped me along the way, and I hope I have a lot more people to thank in the future.

This is why I write, and this is what is going to keep me going. As long as I am inspired, I am going to keep working, and I will keep putting it out there for the world to see. Thanks for reading. Stop by anytime.

~Ian

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