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Tuesday, 16 November 2010

I write therefore I am ...... a writer

Whilst blog hopping recently, I visited numerous sites of people who describe themselves as “aspiring writers” or “would-be writers”. Almost universally I have found their blogs to be interesting and well executed, well worth reading. To me they are writers! The fact that they may not have been commercially published is immaterial. 
For myself, I really was an aspiring writer for 30 years or more. My great aspiration was to write, but instead I kept the stories in my head. Now I have started writing, I believe myself to be a writer.
I would urge anyone who strings words together for the pleasure of others to see themselves as an actual writer. It seems to me that this self belief is the right place to be when finding the discipline needed to commit thousands or tens of thousands of words to paper. 
The writer is within, the words on the page are what happens when the writer is released.


  1. Hi,

    Yep, writer and writing is not always about learning the craft of writing re journalism/correspondent courses and then settling to medium of travel writing or taking up the task of penning biographies, though many journalists' do write novels, whereas, writing from the heart one can see is so oft lacking in many bestselling novels of late, the end product clearly geared to financial gain and often as not becomes a bestseller on media hype alone: the content sometimes abysmal, badly written and proclaimed something it clearly ain't.

    So yes, anyone who pens for "love" of the witten word and the joy of creating worlds all their own, can def claim self a writer! If that writer is then published, well okay, welcome to the public credibility club: such doesn't necessarily mean you're a better writer than the next, but you now got form. ;)


  2. Thank you Francine ...
    You are right of course, it is important that every writer learns the craft and develops their skills, irrespective of whether they are drawn to fact or fiction, articles or novels. Whether a writer becomes a great writer will depend on their innate skills as a wordsmith and their willingness to learn.

  3. You and Francine are probably right, Dominic, but I am much older and therefore am of the old school, which believed writers had to have a good command of the English language: words, grammar, punctuation, the whole enchilada.
    There was a time when I made my living by writing, but for most of my working life I was a newspaper compositor. Therefore, until I finish my "current WIP" (to borrow your phrase) I will consider myself a printer, not a writer.
    I post my snapshots to photo memes but I do not consider myself a photographer by any stretch of the imagination. I have known writers. I have known photographers. I knew what kind of work they could produce and I knew the depth of their knowledge. I cannot pretend to be them.
    As I said, this is the old-school way of looking at things. It may no longer be relevant in the 21st century. I certainly encourage people who show a flair for the written word, and who want to write, to do so, but I can't say everyone who blogs is a writer or a photographer.
    Thus concludes Auntie Kay's lecture for the day. Sorry 'bout that. I'm done now.
    -- K

    Kay, Alberta, Canada
    An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

  4. I consider myself an aspiring author but not an aspiring writer--I agree that if you write, you should consider yourself a writer.

  5. Ah! Yes I agree Eagle. I certainly would not consider myself an author, and would not do so until I was published.
    Kay, I quite understand your viewpoint. I realise that I was not perhaps absolutely clear. I would not necessarily consider a person to be a writer just because they blog, although some articles are beautifully written. I only mentioned the blogs because these are predominantly where I saw the descriptions of aspiring writers. However people are not describing themselves as aspiring writers because they blog, they are blogging about the writing that they are doing!
    I agree Kay that a person who takes snaps and puts them in an album is not really a photographer. Someone who practices the craft and produces finished artwork, whether or not it is done so commercially can be considered a photographer.

  6. Hallo Dom can I call you Dom? thanx for coming to my blog today. i think the main reason we try not to be specific is because we are afraid of what others might think e.g. Editors, on the other hand if you tell your neighbor you are a writer and have a business card this could lead to a whole bunch of awkward questions every week, till you get published.

  7. Hi Joanna ... Dom it is!

    Thanks for dropping by!

  8. I love the last line of your post: The writer is within, the words on the page are what happens when the writer is released.

    That is poetry to me. I think you are right on target that we shouldn't equate publication with being able to say that we are writers. Thanks Dominic for reminding us to feel justified in considering ourselves writers. I tell my children that they should strive to write each day and join all who creatively and reflectively try to express themselves through words. It's my biggest hope that they enjoy writing even if in the smallest way. Right now, they brush my enthusiasm off, but we'll see what the future holds. (My fingers are crossed :)


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