We all have our own reasons for writing, and we have our motivations for seeking publication--whether traditional or indie.
Even now, with several books under my belt and four novels in various stages of editing, I find myself doubting what I'm doing. I wonder if all the time I spend on it is really worth the dream I gave up--of going back to college and getting my Bachelor's degree (I have an AA).
The wonderful Natalie Whipple posted a blog a few years ago that answered this question for me. Sometimes, I have to go back and read it for the reminder. She quotes Adam Heine who talks here about a writer's education. He hits the nail on the head. I especially love this part:
... But what kind of job demands years of uncompensated service before giving you even a chance at wages?Nice, Adam. Well said.
All of them, it turns out. It's called college.
College is 4+ years of work that pays nothing and (these days) doesn't even guarantee a job at the end. That's exactly what we're doing when we sit at our computer, typing a story nobody may ever buy.
It's better than college, because it's free. Better because it's easier to hold a job while writing than studying. Better because if we don't get a job with our first degree (i.e. novel), we can write another and learn more...
So long as you live life, working to get published is as valid an education as any other.
Keep writing. It's your education.