Monday 19 March 2018
What it Means to Me to be a Writer
It seems like throughout every writing course I have ever taken, I've been given the same advice, and that is: to never stop writing. I saw a tweet the other day where someone stated that the main advice they had been given all their writing career was that "when you stop writing, you stop being a writer." This lines up exactly what I had been taught. I was always told to write at least 1000 words a night, to never take breaks, and to push myself beyond what I thought I could do. And, like the woman in her tweet said, I am now trying to push that rule out of my head.
Writing fiction is harder than people think. It is not as simple as stream of consciousness writing, in which you know exactly what you want to say and it all flows out. Actual thought has to go into each sentence, and it takes a long time. Bottom line, it is tiring, and I don't always have time to do it everyday. So, when people tell me than in order to be a successful writer, I have to be taking down chunks of a manuscript every evening, that discourages me.
One of my pet peeves is when people say, "you aren't a writer unless you've written a book!" Technically speaking, the definition of a writer is not a job, it is someone who uses written words to communicate their ideas. Hell, even writing essays for school makes you a writer!! I feel like there are some pretty pretentious people out there that think they are above everybody else because they have been published. This group is a few, but they are such a downer on the people who are just getting started.
Writing for me is something that I do when I want to. I am not hunched over a desk at 2:00 am rushing to meet deadlines because someone told me "when I stop writing, I stop being a writer." I am a writer simply by writing this post, by writing an essay, heck, when writing a coherent tweet! And I refuse to be pressured into forcing myself to write a story every night that isn't there. I think I will turn out better that way.
What does writing mean to you?
Emily @ Paperback Princess