Deprecated: Hook custom_css_loaded is deprecated since version jetpack-13.5! Use WordPress Custom CSS instead. Jetpack no longer supports Custom CSS. Read the documentation to learn how to apply custom styles to your site: in /wordpress/wp-includes/functions.php on line 6078 Why I Write Books (instead of baking cookies) | Kathy Nickerson

I would like to tell you that I write novels to share a timeless message with the world. Or to contribute to the greater good. I hope my books accomplish those goals. At least a bit. But the truth is I write books because I’m a much nicer person when I’m chatting with imaginary people. I’m especially nicer if those people wake me at daylight to correct something I’ve written the day before. (Elmer Grigsby once scolded me at 4:30 a.m. about a scene involving pizza.) I miss the sleep, but I love the conversations. I feel energized all day.

Baking, on the other hand, disappoints me. For some reason, nothing ever looks or tastes like the recipe. I mean, once I left out the flour. That might explain some things.

Writing seems to be a recipe I can follow. On my desktop, I have a document keeping track of the characters who show up in my books. Names, relationships, pertinent details. It includes more than 80 people. Well, one is a frog, and a few are dragons. But mostly people.

I know those people the way I know my friends. I want to send Christmas cards to Flora the Librarian, and I long to check in with Quinn Marvel to see how middle school is treating her. Even writing about them in this post makes me remember how happy I am to know people like Madge Dupree and Paige Rosedale. (I could go on like a grandmother showing you pictures, but I’ll stop.)

If I go too long without these interactions, I start to feel depressed. I wonder what my purpose is in the world and whether or not I have enough energy to pick up the stray paper clip I can see across the room from my rocking chair. (I also love my rocking chair. I’ve heard that rocking never gets you anywhere, but I promise you that is not true. I’ve solved many a conundrum while rocking and praying.)

Writing books may not be your thing, but I bet you have something. A pursuit of some kind that brings sparkle to your life. Whatever it is, I hope you pursue it. Give it some thought, devote some time, and feel free to tell us all about it in the comments!