Because of my wonderful husband.
You see, he is my target audience, critique group, first reader, and editor (in the grammar and spelling sense) all rolled into one. We think alike, we communicate (rather) well together, and I can trust him implicitly. The truth is I couldn't write without him. I know because I've tried.
"Writing is a solitary occupation. Family, friends, and society are the natural enemies of the writer. He must be alone, uninterrupted, and slightly savage if he is to sustain and complete an undertaking." ~Jessamyn West
Everywhere I go in the writing blogosphere, all the authors and those who give writing advice to new writers seem to agree on one thing. You shouldn't share your WIP with anyone. You should wait until it's done and even then you probably shouldn't share it with friends or family. What could I do in the face of such unanimity?
I have at times tried to go for weeks without talking to my husband about my WIP. I usually start out well. I'll get quite a bit of wordage under my belt and start feeling confident in my abilities... and then I always hit a wall. ALWAYS.
On the other hand, when my husband and I sit down together and talk about my ideas and the direction I want to go with my stories... then everything just seems to flow together. The ideas pour forth and everything becomes clear. Suddenly I figure out everything that's been troubling me.
Which is what happened last night. I've been feeling lost lately. Not just because I've been too sick for several days to do any writing and I don't have any momentum going. (Head colds: the bane of the writer.) Though that doesn't help. But also because there is a constant conflict within me between the worldbuilding aspect of the sub-creation I aim for and the actual narrative writing. I'm the sort of person that feel an intense need to fully understand the world I am writing about and how it works before I can write stories about it. (And not just cultural aspects of where the story is actually taking place, I'm talking the metaphysics of the whole universe. I feel the need to understand it as thoroughly as possible.) And yet I know that spending all my time worldbuilding isn't going to get my work published. This is a constant struggle for me. And it's often enough that it causes me to become paralyzed. (Because I wouldn't be a fantasy writer if I was an emotionally stable person.)
So after I'd sat there staring at my notebook without actually writing any words in it for about an hour I finally told my husband what was bothering me. And then we spent another hour discussing the metaphysical properties of air, earth and water, delving into the workings of the afterlife and exploring ideas about order and chaos, form and substance, and many other things.
As a result, I think I have a clearer idea of the overall story arc of my entire fantasy world than I ever have before. I know more about the timeline of the world (and where various stories will fit into it) and understand better the sources of conflict that exist there. All in all, I feel better prepared to write.
I won't make the mistake of trying to do this alone again. For me, writing is not, cannot be, a solitary occupation. And I'm so lucky to have someone that I can share this process with intimately. I wouldn't want to do it any other way.