I hope you’re having a good week so far. Stay strong. It’s almost Friday.
So many people are going back to school this month, and I can’t help feeling nostalgic. I adored being at college. Although it was scary and frustrating at times, being at school taught me so many things. It helped me, above all, figure out what truly made me happy, what made me feel whole: I realized I wanted to be a writer.
|I realized I wanted to be a. . . WHAT?|
I’m not saying I had to go to college to finally figure this out. Not really. All I know is that leaving home for the first time, living abroad, meeting people from so many different backgrounds, triggered at that time in my life a strong desire to find myself and accept whoever I wanted to be. This could have happened under different circumstances, of course. It all depends.
Accepting who you are isn’t the easiest thing in the world. In my case, being able to say I’m a writer with confidence still is a challenge, but I’m working on that. I’ve always been a writer, but people (and even myself, I must admit) got so used to different facets of my identity, it surprises them to hear that I want to devote my life to fiction.
Not too long ago I came across a Twitter friend’s blog entry on how she introduced herself as a writer to a friend's mother once, and the lady asked to know where she could find her books. She still is seeking representation, which in my opinion doesn’t change the fact that she is a writer -- She writes, doesn’t she? That makes her a writer. But the lady, guess what, said, “Ah, so you’re not a writer yet.”
|It makes me so mad to hear stuff like that!|
So, she’s not a writer, because she is not published? What gives that lady the right to question her identity as a writer because her work is not on shelves?
Well, things like this -- and many more -- used to leave me really self-conscious about myself. If I say I’m a writer, people will want to know what I write, where they can find my writing, they’ll want to know whether my ‘title as a writer’ really is legit. And I’m not published. Fear of hearing “You’re not a writer” paralyzed me for many years. But I couldn't simply ignore that in the end of the day what really brought me consolation was writing fiction. Writing my YA stories was the spark that provided light in gloomy times. I had to find a way to ignore my self-consciousness and start fighting for myself. I had to embrace my identity, and disregard what people like the “So you’re not a writer yet” lady said. Because I felt like a writer. I lived like a writer. I breathed like a writer. I write, writing is what makes me happy, so I’m a writer.
|I'm a writer!|