You Know You're A Writer When...
As Writers, we are a breed all our own. We have the greatest job in the world; we are storytellers, entertainers, cultural critics, historians, visionaries, humanitarians, and the gatekeepers of art and language.
For us, words are powerful, they can penetrate national and ideological lines; they can stop wars and battle injustice. If words on a two hundred year old piece of paper make us free, maybe words are more powerful than all of the weapons of war combined. If history has shown us anything, truth can never be silenced.
Given my utmost respect for writers, and including myself in that stunning group, I feel that I have the privilege to poke fun of some of the stereotypes, idiosyncrasies, and benefits to being a writer. It's all done in love and humor. Go ahead, nod along, chuckle, and get busy writing that novel!
- The buttons wear off of your computer, especially vowels. A, S, N, M, and L are all gone.
- Your hands are freakishly skinny from all of the finger exercise.
- You constantly have dark circles under your eyes from getting inspiration at odd hours of the morning.
- You talk about characters as if you really know them and had coffee with them this morning.
- You call your best friend and ask, "If you were going to kidnap the President's daughter, and you only had a paperclip and some duck tape, how would you do it?" Hopefully said best friend knows you're writing a book, otherwise men in black coats show up at your door.
- Every time you're in a plane, train, or government building you're trying to figure out how your eternally evil character could wreak havoc on innocent civilians.
- You compromise with your spouse that you will do the dishes if he or she will read a chapter of your manuscript...again...because you changed another word.
- As others are talking, you are mentally adding punctuation to their speech.
- You become easily agitated by those who speak with bad grammar.
- As you read the newspaper, you are editing it for missing commas and misspelled words.
- Your coworkers are constantly asking, "How do you spell.....?"
- You look up from your computer, four hours have gone by, you've missed dinner, you've only written half a page, and you don't care. What a productive day!
- You meet a new person, tell them what you do, and they ask if you are retired. The second question they ask is, "Do you like cats?"
- You change your major to English and even your professors give you a funny look as they ask you what you want to do with your life.
- You speak in similes and metaphors for every point you illustrate.
- Your therapist is on speed dial; so is your agent, your editor, and your mother.
- You walk out of a movie thinking, "That was beautiful writing" not, "That was beautiful cinematography and great acting."
- You often get asked, upon telling someone you are a writer, what you do for a living.
- You are constantly being asked if you will write other people's wedding speeches, thesis papers, valentines cards, and cover letters. To which you respond that your freelance fee is $50 an hour.
- You calculate that your current hourly rate for your revenue sharing content is $0.05 an hour. However, you are certain, that 1000 articles later, your hourly rate will be $100 an hour, 24 hours a day because of compounding residual income streams.
- You picture retirement as writing poetry in a cabin in the woods and reading stories to children at the local library on Saturday mornings. Oh sweet bliss!
- Your ideal work space is a laptop, a Mediterranean balcony, a good wi-fi connection, and words that pulse through your fingers faster than you can logically think.
- Nothing bugs you more than LOL, BYOF, LMAO, and other immature abuses of the English language.
- You are constantly thinking, "How can I make this character's life more miserable? Conflict, I need more conflict."
- You pin your rejection letters on your wall as if they were battle wounds from war. A few hundred more and you could wallpaper your kitchen.
© 2014 Jennifer Arnett