I’m so excited to be part of the Glitch blog tour! I have a guest post for you all, from the author Heather Anastasiu, about why Heather writes. You can also check out my review of Glitch here.
Why do you write?
This is a question I’ve pondered for some time, and one I’ve asked my other writer friends. It was something I was fascinated about as a grad student in literature—why authors wrote, what they were trying to say, if anything. I wondered (and researched) what literature does, what the function of books and various genres were. As someone who’s been an avid reader all my life, it was a personal question too—why did I like certain books but not others? Why did some books stand out as ones I can point to at various stages of my life, some even connected to major shifts in my thought patterns?
But that was all trying to figure out what literature did as a reader. Now that I’m a writer myself, I ponder the question from a new angle. What am I trying to do, from a theoretical perspective? We were endlessly questioning authorial intent (or whether there was such a thing) as grad students. I was a big fan of deconstructionism, and ripping things apart to show hidden biases the writers didn’t even know they were encoding into their books.
As a writer now, I ask myself: what the heck is my intent? Why do I write?
What do I want you to take away from it?
The simple answer is: I want to make you feel something.
Some writer's say they are out to make you cry. I won't go that far. I just want to create a story that makes for an engaging emotional experience for my reader. I hope my characters worm their way into your brain and stay there awhile. This is what books I've loved throughout my life have done. They made me laugh and weep and feel all other spectrum of emotions. Sometimes I’d identify with a character. Other times, the plot would be so perfectly paced or shocking or deeply romantic, I couldn’t put a book down. So I think that’s why I write—I don’t have an agenda or particular message I’m trying to make sink in. I just want to make people feel something strongly. This is also a theme in Glitch, which I sorta realized had evolved naturally as I was writing, but really only saw after I’d finished it. It’s also about people beginning to feel powerful emotion, and the power and self-realizations that come along with that.
Heather Anastasiu grew up in Texas and recently moved to Minneapolis with her family. When she's not busy getting lost exploring the new city, she spends most days writing at a café or daydreaming about getting a new tattoo.