Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Double Oh Writer

Writing is my great big secret. I don't really tell people that I write. I used to, back in the hey-day of my "I'm so awesome I'll be published in a year" phase, but nowadays, I keep my goal of publication closer to the vest. I guess it was all great telling people that I was writing a book. They perked up with a, "Really? What's it about?" and I'd tell them, and then we'd have a lively conversation. They'd ask about the book from time to time and that was fine too. But once I finished the book, then people wanted to know why I hadn't gotten it published. And when I explained whatever it was I knew at that point about the publishing process (which was notably nothing and sounded like a bunch of half-baked excuses), they'd ask why I didn't just hire an agent to sell the book for me. Really? What a grand idea, I should do just that! 

Looking back, I see that I liked talking about my writing to people because it was a way to get my needy, insecure ego stroked. They were impressed. They thought I could do it! It felt great! But the downside of that is, then they knew about my dream, and they also knew it was still unaccomplished. I felt like I was stuck in a perpetual senior year, constantly being asked, "So when do you graduate again?" and my answer was always, "Maybe this year."

Not that I hide my writing. Not at all. But I'm definitely more selective about who's in-the-know. If I'm waiting for my daughter with my laptop in front of me and someone says, "Hey, whatcha working on?" I don't have to say, "Working on my novel!" with a giant smile and sparkledust in my eyes, silently begging them to ask me more. I can safely answer, "Just writing. I have a family website." This is a misleading answer, even though both parts are true, but that's my cover and I don't plan on blowing it.


  1. LOL! I totally know where you're coming from. My reasoning is slightly different, though. When I USED to tell people that I was a writer (because I don't really broadcast it anymore) they'd reply with something like, "What do you write about?" My answers:
    1. "A girl who turns into an animal on the night of the full moon."
    2. "A woman who sees the future in glass and is abducted by a sexy male alien."
    3. "A teenage girl who lives alone on a desert island and when she crosses the sea, she realizes she's the granddaughter of their lost king."

    Well, when I'd tell them any of the above, they'd instantly lose interest and look at me like I must be mental. So I stopped telling people. Creativity has a price!

  2. Holy smokes I laughed so loud after reading number 3 my husband looked up to see what the heck was wrong with me!! They're great ideas but imagining hearing 1, 2, and 3 like that was such a funny mental image. Ha!

    You're definitely right about creativity having a price, but it's well worth it :)