Writing is Not a Choice

It’s a compulsion

Sean Bennett
4 min readJul 16, 2022


Photo by Ralston Smith on Unsplash

What does it mean to be a writer?

Personally, I think everyone who writes is a writer. Whether it's your first article or your hundredth, the creation of content through the wrangling of words on a page is, by definition, the only qualifying factor for being a writer.

I think of it as a title. One that is earned through work, like a ‘manager’ or ‘executive’. It relates to an external element of a person’s life and the way they spend their time.

There are millions of writers. Many of them are incredibly talented. Many of them are far more talented than me, or you, or 99% of their peers.

They all carry the title, and they should carry it proudly. Being a writer is no easy feat and being one consistently is even more of a challenge. It’s a group we should all be proud of being part of.

But there is another group.

They have the same name — writers. But there is one important distinction.

It's not a title for them. It's an identity.

Being a writer doesn't describe what they do. It describes who they are, at the very core of their being.

Writing is an obsession

It's just gone midnight as I write this. I have work tomorrow morning and, quite frankly, I should probably be in bed, not hammering away at my keyboard, lit only by the icy glow of my monitors.

It's been months since I published any writing online. Life got in the way, as it so often does, and I find myself without the time or mental capacity to entertain my desire to write.

But the desire was there. Every. Single. Day.

Everything that happens to me is a possible story. Every revelation the seed of an interesting take that you, the reader, might enjoy.

Writing isn't my job. It isn't a hobby. It's who I am.

Maybe it's the same for you, too?

But why?

Why do we feel the compulsion to write?

Because writing is more than creation. It’s catharsis.



Sean Bennett

Freelance writer, editor and all-round curious so and so. Writing about politics, being queer, and lots besides! Get in touch at sean.writing27@gmail.com