"I don’t write to dream; I write to stop dreaming, to be more present. To tell my way toward clarity. I think I would be a writer even if I didn’t write. I’d have that observational inclination towards the ordinary—that open-mouthed stare at unprocessed existence going by. I write mostly for the process—of looking, thinking, naming, discovering. I think this is why many who might loosely be called documentarians—essayists, memoirists, literary journalists, photographers, nonfiction filmmakers, even biographical or documentary fiction writers—do what we do. We have an obsessive interest in presenting and pondering ordinary life, the day-to-day flow of things."
That quote by Greg Bottoms, from a letter to a photographer. I think he nailed it, for me. I do write to stop dreaming, to work through the grief, to get my thoughts straight.