God said, "I need someone to be humanity's mirror, to create characters with which reader will identify, and characters readers will hate because they despise those traits within themselves. I need someone to magnify and condense the human condition, to turn pain into prose, life and laughter into literature, and love into letters. I need someone to wrap truth in the guise of fiction. I need someone who can uplift humanity by exploring its flaws, and to teach unity by exploring its differences."
And so God made a writer.
God said, "I need someone in love with language, the music of words, the rhythmic flow of a sentence, the dance of a plotline woven through a tale. I need someone who can endure days when the words just won't come, and the days when they pour out too fast to be typed. I need someone who will learn intricate, obscure, and confusing rules of grammar, then ignore them anyway when they get in the way of the story.
"I need someone to stay up until three AM, searching for the right word to evoke a memory, and spend hours researching a detail readers will never notice unless it's wrong. I need someone who can endure long and lonely nights at a keyboard for the sake of communication, yet reach out and engage with readers in meaningful ways."
And so God made a writer.
God said, "I need someone who has a heart tender enough to form their empathy for the world into words that stir the hearts of readers, yet strong enough to endure harsh reviews. I need someone who can brutally slash and burn words written in their own heart's blood for the sake of clarity, yet gentle enough with constructive criticism to encourage a despondent colleague. Someone selfless enough to cheer for a more successful friend, and to encourage another writer when they are feeling dejected themselves.
"I need someone who willing to bare their soul and pour endless hours into the work, only to have it overlooked among thousands of other offerings, and yet still be able to put their everything into the next one. Someone who - when sales are low and reviews are bad - will wipe the tears from their eyes so they can see the screen clearly as they keep typing."
God needed someone who - despite all the pain and struggle - would love what they do with a fierce passion. Someone who wouldn't give up, despite the odds, who would create just for the sheer joy of it.
He needed someone willing to embark on a journey, knowing they will never reach the destination. He needed someone willing to burst their heart from the effort, knowing that 'success' is fickle, fleeting, elusive, and unlikely, but would still say that they love storytelling to the depths of their soul.
You can read the original Paul Harvey speech on which this piece is based here.