I know when I started publishing my first story it was for a fun, creative outlet. Well, as with most everything that is worth doing, it turned out to be more work than I had ever imagined I would dedicate to this little hobby. But I do still consider it a fun escape and I guess if it ever stopped being that, I would stop writing (or at least stop publishing).
It is a strange phenomenon that once you publish a story people automatically assume that you think you know what you're doing and aren't insecure about your work. All of a sudden, by the click of one button you have become a "writer". For me, publishing my first story did two things. First, it made me realize that all those other stories I had been reading and enjoying were just written by normal people like me who probably had the same misgivings as I did (at least that's what I told myself). And second, it totally got me hooked! In answer to the first realization, I started trying to review stories more and talk to people instead of just "lurking" around like I had done for several months. For the second, I began to write, write and write.
Is this the fun part? My current story, if you happen to be following it, was supposed to be a "fun" little break from the more serious post-ROTJ relationship saga I was trying to work on with my other stories. It has become FAR longer than I ever imagined it would and although I have this grand finale in my mind, I am very nervous about getting it out on paper and have only a vague outline of it so far. One of my weaknesses in stories is action scenes; I'd much prefer a nice conversation or argument over a gun fight or lightsaber battle. I am a hopeless romantic and if it doesn't end in a kiss, well, it's just not worth writing about, right?
Well, I am going to have a hard time avoiding some sort of battle in my current story and it scares the hell out of me and makes it seem not-so-much-fun. But maybe that's a bit of a lie, because even writing about it now just gets my adrenaline pumping in a nervous, excited kind-of-way. Pushing our boundaries keeps it from getting stale, too - I guess. Maybe that's why this story came to me, to force me to work on something outside of my comfort zone. And there's no rule stating that a lightsaber battle can't end in a kiss...
Anyway, I guess I'd better get to work, because - yes, I do have a day job. I certainly can't retire on the money that I'm raking in from fanfic.net. Not yet, anyway. :-)