Can I Call Myself a Writer Simply Because I Write?
When Can I Call Myself a Writer?
What does it take before someone who writes is recognised as a writer? Is it that first published article, where an agreed amount of money changes hands or does it start long before that? While it is fair to say, most people can write this does not mean, most people are writers. In much the same way as most people can sing yet I know without doubt I, for one, and I know a few others, cannot be called a singer.
This is the sheer simplicity of writing and language. If someone strings some words together to make a sentence then this is the beginning of a written piece. But what does it take for the author of that piece to suddenly become a writer?
The Simplicity of Writing
According to the Encarta Dictionary of UK English, the literal definition of a writer could be any of the following three examples.
1. somebody who writes books or articles professionally
2. the person who wrote a specific text or document
3. somebody who can write, who writes well, or who enjoys writing
This is wonderful news for me because I can tick all three boxes! I do write articles professionally, I am the person who wrote this specific document and I am somebody who enjoys writing.
Author Versus Writer
If we accept the above then the definition for being a writer is clear, but what is it about that written piece that makes someone an author as opposed to a writer? The answer is similar to what makes a writer. Again according to the Encarta Dictionary an author is somebody who writes a book or other text such as a literary work or a report -- almost a combination of the first two definitions of a writer.
While the distinctions between the two may not appear instantly apparent, in the real world an author is more commonly accepted as the successful writer who has published and receives an income from their works.
From my perspective the moment I began calling myself a writer, my thinking changed and what followed were opportunities to not only showcase my writing but to be paid for my efforts. There are many different sources for a writer to publish. If you are serious about writing then get busy researching. The more you learn the more chances of your writing standing out from the rest.
Some Good Resources on Writing
Benny the Writer
In answer to Benny’s original question, ‘When can you truly, unabashedly call yourself a writer?’ I’d suggest settling for option 3. As long as you enjoy writing I’d say you could call yourself a writer. Hopefully this is the reason there are currently 185,000 people, otherwise known as Hubbers on this site alone, writing to their hearts’ content.
If you want to join the ranks of HubPages and change your status from writer to Hubber you can share your writings with the world by simply signing up here. It's fun and it's free and who knows where it may lead. There are also some great tips for improving your writing and becoming published. Best of all HubPages is a community of like minded people, that is 'Writers'.
Copyright © Karen Wilton 2010
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