I have to admit, I’m sort of a closeted writer. Other than my online writing friends, only my closest family members know that I’ve written a few books and am in the process of seeking representation and eventual publication. I mean, I have a blog and Twitter account, so if someone were so inclined, they could Google me and they’d know all about what I’ve been up to, but I don’t really like to bring it up in conversation. It just doesn’t feel “real” yet. I do talk to my husband (at length!) about my projects and querying and submissions, but he’s really the only one.
Part of it is that I feel a bit pretentious telling acquaintances and people I’ve just met that I’m a writer. Inevitably, their next questions is, “What have you written?” Well, I’ve written a lot of stuff, but you can’t buy it. It’s not in the hands of any publishers yet–in fact, I’m still quite early in the process.
And then you have to update those in the know, which at this point in time is a lot of, “She asked for a partial,” or “He requested the full!” or “She passed.” It’s all exciting for ME (well, except when they pass!), but to everyone else, I’m willing to bet they think all I do is a lot of emailing, then waiting… and waiting… and waiting.
I know I’m a writer. It’s what I’ve spent the last few years consumed with, stressed over, excited about and everything in between. I know I’ll continue to write, even if it takes years to meet my goal of publication. But at what point do you get to CALL yourself a writer? When your first manuscript is complete? Or when you land an agent? The day you sign your first book deal? Or maybe on release day, when your literary baby is born into the world?
I do NOT watch The Family Guy (I actually don’t watch any cartoons, ever, unless they are Disney), however my husband and younger brother are big fans. In fact, my brother and I have a running joke involving Stewie (the baby) and Brian (the dog and aspiring novelist). Just about every time we talk he asks me (in very exaggerated, Stewie-like tones!) about my novel and protagonist and whether my story has a beginning, middle and end. Watch the clip below… it always makes me laugh. 🙂