What kind of a writer are you , anyway? This question assaulted my almost awake brain this morning along with thoughts of hot coffee and breakfast. Four categories came to mind. Let me know what you think.
Addict – These writers are the ones who could spell “cat” before anyone else in kindergarten, passed elaborate notes to their girlfriends in eighth grade and embraced journaling shortly thereafter. Their college dissertations were a joy to pen and there’s a behemoth of a manuscript under the bed that only needs a few thousand more words before the rest of us get to see it.
Reporter – This guy knows he can tell it straight and true better than anyone else. He has a keen eye for detail and loves being at the scene, notebook, microphone, cell phone in hand. The words flow fast and furious if there’s one scintilla of scandal to be sniffed out and recorded. He wants to be The go to guy wherever there’s news that needs telling.
Dreamer – Oh, I love these people. Their heroes include Ernest Hemingway, JK Rowling, Stephen King, and Amanda Hocking. A mixed bunch, I know, but the dreamer imagines herself being counted among them someday. She even wonders what she’ll wear to the awards ceremony she'll attend with them on that faraway evening with cameras popping and champagne flowing. Okay, Hemingway might not be there, but you get the idea.
Wannabe – These individuals have a gut feeling they could be a writer if only all the stars would align, they had a nice desk, lots of copy paper, and editors would quit being so picky about what they want for their publications. They even submit a piece or two and maybe sell something. But they lack stamina and one or two disappointments puts them into the deep freeze. They’ll get back to writing when all the stars align, there’s a sale on copy paper . . . Uh, huh.
Maybe each of us harbors small bits of all four. I’ve been pummeled day and night by the word demons begging to be released; like an addict. I’ve read stories that I know I could have done a better job of than that reporter. The dreamer played a pretty big roll in my life. At the ripe old age of 50 I decided it was about time to pursue my lifelong goal of becoming a writer. I had the Internet for a guide and found others just like me – the wannabes.
The first time I sent a story soaring into cyberspace my heart was a trip hammer. But the thrill of seeing these words come back to me a few days later, “We’d like to publish your story in next month's issue," pushed me over the edge. It was a small online children’s magazine – now defunct – but it was just what I needed for validation. And in the years that followed I've chugged along fending off disappointment, frustration, self-doubt, and the occasional stint in the deep freeze. Perhaps you can relate.
So – is writing an addiciton for you? A duty? A dream realized or a dream on hold? I’d love to know.
Image: Free Digital Photos