Sometimes I think I don't really want to be published at all. I read the horror stories about publishing and publicity, reviews and remainders, and I wonder why I'm doing this at all. What is so important to me about seeing my fiction published? Why am I sitting here praying just to be shortlisted for the contest I entered my novel in?
It's not because I think people who look at me as a loser will realize I'm not. A friend wisely pointed out once that people who think you're a loser will always find ways to see you that way. You put 20 books on the midlist, you're not good enough to crack the NYT Bestseller list. You crack the NYT list, and they're lowering their standards.
I think it's some combination of wanting to make people stop and think, and to feel that there is more to life than cleaning my house and changing diapers. I'm a big-picture person; I have to have a long view in order to function. My day-to-day life right now is so mundane that to be able to enjoy it, I need to feel like I'm making a difference. Writing does that.
So why do I want to be published? I guess it's just a big-picture version of the satisfaction I derive from folks who tell me nice things about my published works. Is it necessary? I don't know. I'm too tired to think about it right now. And there's a diaper that needs changing.