Writing…for writers…is about so much more that the act of writing. Any yahoo can write, but a writer…now that is a different kind of animal. A writer HAS to write. A writer has NO choice. A writer writes with every part of their being.
I have been a writer for over 30 years…which is interesting since I am only 27…ahem… Writing is all I have ever known. I tried to do other jobs…I was a bartender, I worked for an answering service…I worked at a liquor store…I worked at a 7-11 for two whole days…I tried other stuff; but the writing always came back around. It was like I had been cursed with this malady that would never go away.
Even when I wanted to do something else because writing had frustrated me, I couldn’t get away. I would take a job doing everything but writing and end up writing in that very same job. Case in point…I took a job with DHSH in California answering phones…within two weeks I was designing their information pamphlets. I once took a job at a hotel, working the front desk…in a week I was head of their marketing department and designing menus for the hotel restaurant…it was just crazy…I couldn’t NOT write.
I am not unusual; (at least not in that way) all writers can’t help but write. Here are a couple of ways to tell if you are an actual writer and not just someone who happens to write….
- If you find yourself looking for a scape of paper in a bar to write down something the bartender said while being hit on by a pretty girl…you are probably a writer.
- If you sit at the dinner table tapping your fingers as though there is a keyboard in front of you because you have to eat at the dinner table tonight…you are probably a writer.
- If your butt is in the permanent shape of your office chair…you are probably a writer.
- If your spouse looks bored or their eyes glaze over when you are telling them what happened in the 7-11 parking lot (because it is a two hour story now)…you are probably a writer.
- If your Christmas list includes things like, pens, notebooks, Twinkies, a flask and printer ink…you are probably a writer.
- If you heard the phrase lap dance and got excited because you thought your friend got a new lap desk…you are probably a writer.
- If you are glad that Bluetooth headsets have come out because, now, no one will realize that you are actually talking to yourself in the car…you are probably a writer.
- If you are keeping track of the people you have killed over the years and it I so detailed that the FBI might get involved if they find it…you are probably a writer. (or a very stupid serial killer)
- If you find your mind taking notes during sex and then you use that experience for a book…you are probably a writer. (a divorced writer if you admit to it, but still a writer)
If any of these things describe you stop apologizing to everyone for writing at the least opportune times and stop making excuses for your writing because, frankly, you can’t help it. A true writer is a person who can’t help but write and when they try not to…writing finds them. It’s okay…the world needs us to tell their stories…no matter where we try and hide. So sit down at that keyboard and wear the badge that says “writer” proudly….yes, it’s a compulsion, yes, you can’t help it, but, damn it…it’s who you are so enjoy it.
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