I've been asking myself this question all day today. I'm not really a depressed, melancholy kind of person, but I sometimes get into a sad mood and think about these things.
I think part of the reason I write is because everyday life can often lack real emotion. We have annoyances. Some of us have really big annoyances, but that's all they really are. Every so often, something incredibly sad happens, like the loss of a loved one. But what really, truly causes happiness, or real fear, or real anger?
I sometimes feel ancient, even at only 29 years old, and I wonder if I've really felt anything since I was a kid. Do you remember the unadulterated joy of childhood? Like getting a new toy, or going to an amusement park, or discovering something? You didn't have to try to be happy - it just happened naturally. And we felt real fear as kids - when we'd done something wrong, and we just knew we had it coming. Or real anger, because some other kid was mean to us.
Now, as an adult, I find myself on a pretty even keel most of the time. And that even keel mostly consists of... "blah." I'm not particularly sad. I can't say I'm particularly happy, either. I'm just... really normal. And I'm bored.
So when I write, I really enjoy the fact that I can make my characters pure. They can have emotions, adventures, and experiences. They're not wasting time in a tiny little condo out in the middle of nowhere, trying to do what they should be doing with their lives. Frankly, if I could find an effective way to eliminate currency in my fantasy world, I would. Unfortunately I can't think of an effective way to do it that wouldn't tie up the plot for 2 days while my characters exchange some menial farm work for food.
Anyways, I don't have a particular point, except that I saw a video tribute to "Everybody's Free (To Wear Sunscreen)" today and it got me thinking. I wonder if self-publishing this year will make me happy? I'm not sure that the action itself will. But if someone reads my book and enjoys it, then I think that would probably cause me to be happy. And I think that's okay.