Monday, 4 January 2010

I write, therefore I am...or something.

Receptionists will tell you they are receptionists. Solicitors will tell you they are solicitors. Yet writers will tell you they're "trying to write", or they're "working on being a writer". They rarely own up to what they actually are. If you write, then you're a writer. It's that simple. (For a better explanation of this concept, see C.N.Nevets' post here on the same subject).

Funny thing is, I'm no better. I talk about being a writer, and I've even had work accepted, and yet I still have problems nailing my colours to the mast and saying "I am a writer". I'm not sure why. It's probably something to do with the difficulty in reconciling something most people see as a pasttime with a profession, and it's also something a lot of people say they're doing when, in actual fact, they're not doing anything. Still, I've sold a few of my stories and I write most days, which satisfies most criteria, but yet still the doubts remained unquenched.

Still, I've decided to redraft my first novel, and 2010 will be the year when I try to find it a home. With this in mind, I'd better learn to call myself a writer!

So I thought I might tell you a little about my book. I suppose it best comes under the young adult/middle grade umbrella, sitting squarely in the 'supernatural' camp. It's about a teenager named Sarah, who is growing up in the western Highlands under the far-from-watchful eyes of her socialite mother and scientist father. Sarah not only discovers that ghosts are real, they are also organised. She befriends the castle's ghost, a cavalier named Fowlis Westerby who has been assigned to her family. When things go wrong at the ghostly HQ, Sarah and Fowlis have to team up to straighten everything out.

I'm really proud of it as it stands, but I know it needs work. Luckily I think I know how to solve the few plot niggles, and once I'm done, Sarah will be getting her own blog. I may even given Fowlis his own Twitter feed. Before you scoff that spirits can't use computers, I shall direct you to watch Ghost!

Right, I'm off to do some editing. Have an excellent day, people!

4 comments:

Paul said...

I suppose it's the fundamental problem that unless we earn our living from it, we feel uncomfortable claiming the title. Solicitors are paid for being solicitors, receptionists for being receptionists, but us writers? There's more of us un-or-under-paid and trying than there are writers earning their crust solely from the fruits of their pens.

Still, time for a revolution - we are writers, unashamed, even if we are unsalaried!

Icy Sedgwick said...

Exactly - artists are still artists, even if they don't sell their work! Why should we be any different, simply because we paint with words?

Jeannie Campbell, LMFT said...

hi icy...i'm totally in agreement about artists being artists, no matter the medium. i do a lot of my best artistic work in therapy!

jeannie
The Character Therapist

Melissa Donovan said...

Why are writers so hesitant to call themselves writers? I agree with you -- I think it has something to do with writing as a profession. People think if they don't make a full time living as a writer, then they shouldn't use the title. Hogwash! If you write, you're a writer.

Your novel sounds awesome, definitely something I would have read as a kid (and maybe as an adult too!). Good luck!

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