I believe that a writer’s duty as a writer is first to him- or herself. That point in inarguable. A writer has to make a hard-nosed commitment to writing, or the writing won’t happen at all. A writer has to seek out time to write and then guard that time like a pit bull. I got married a few years ago, and committing to writing feels like getting married. Saying yes to the whole enterprise day after day takes a willing and stubborn soul.
But a writer’s first duty as a writer and as a human being, I have also come to believe, is to nurture other writers. A writer must be midwife at the births of other writers’ voices. A writer must share the wisdom she or he has learned in her writer’s solitude and give that wisdom away, with kindness and generosity and gentleness.
It is, I am certain, the giving of an heirloom, an absolutely necessary behest.”
– Julie Checkoway