When people start writing, they don’t worry much about whether they someone calls them a writer or not. The only thing that’s important in this beginning period is the writing process itself. But as soon as the process on the first novel approaches the end or when you write a few stories or poems, you start wondering are you allowed to call yourself a writer. That sounds pretty understandable, but it’s not just a simple question. This question is a source of many problems and sabotages for writers.
The world we live in is full of people we respect. It doesn’t matter what’s the reason for that; it could be their reputation, their deeds, a certificate, their success. We respect them and whatever they say, we take as true. Some of those people said that you need to publish your work to call yourself a writer or that you need to sell this amount of books or that you need to write every day, or… You know what I’m talking about. You have your own rule of when someone becomes a writer and maybe you play by it, maybe not. The fact is that the actual idea of calling yourself a writer has to fit into some rulebook, whether it’s yours or not. Next, the problem is our huuuge respect towards other writers who already achieved some sort of success by society standards (a lot of written books, a lot of sales and so on). Many writers probably don’t want to call themselves writers because they don’t think they’re good enough and this they don’t deserve to be in the same box as that famous writer. They can’t be called by the same title.
This all might sound funny and maybe fake, but talk to other writers about their opinions regarding this topic (it doesn’t matter if they call themselves writers or not). So tell me in the comments what are your rules of being a writer. What do you have to do in order to give yourself that title?
I realized that those rules are pointless as is every discussion about this topic. Follow your own rulebook and you’ll be happy. The problem arises when your rulebook demands are too high. Then, I suggest you to change it. Try my rule.
“You can freely call yourself a writer if you write regularly and with passion.”
Our society had shaped the words like professional or expert so that they look scary or too demanding, but the truth is that if you do write, then you’re a writer. What else could you be? We complicate things too much for ourselves; too much for our own good. You’re not disrespecting other writers if you say you’re one of them. You might be just a beginner, but you do the same work. Don’t build the habit of diminishing your work and your self-value by playing by others’ rules just to be a kind person in their eyes. It’s not your problem if they can’t show the respect towards the rising star.
Many people wait for others to become super popular or successful by society standards to consider them to be good. But you don’t need their approval. If you write, you’re a writer. Don’t stress about it. Feel proud. Proudly say what you are. By the way, you can be many things. There’s another rule that says that you should or must choose only one profession. Well, it might be the best option for some serious dedication, but you can be a cook in free time or a tennis player when you’re with your friends, you can be a gamer. Stop valuing the mere words and respecting them more than you respect yourself and that what you do.
At the end of the day, the only thing that really matters is what you do. A writer, cook, mechanic, basketball player, lawyer… those are just words to help us easily and shortly describe what we do. But that what we do is what truly matters. So just write. And eventually, you’ll understand who you are.