Are you a real writer? What does that mean to you?
As the creator of Quips and Tips for Successful Writers, one of the things I’ve always, always struggled with is the fact that I’m not a traditionally published author.
Can I run a strong, successful writing website when I’ve never been published? Never worked with an editor at a publishing house? Never received royalty checks? Never mourned my remainders?
Sure, I’ve been supporting myself as a freelance writer and blogger for four years, I write BC Women’s Hospital’s monthly eNews articles, I get article assignments from editors without having to pitch, I speak at conferences, and I even turn down consulting and writing work.
But it’s not enough.
This weekend I spoke at the first annual Women and Words Conference in Vancouver, and I asked several people if I can really call myself a writer. They said yes, of course, definitely, you’re all that and more!
The thing is, I don’t feel like a real writer.
If you’re in the same boat and you want to make money writing, read Starting Your Career as a Freelance Writer by Moira Allen. A fantastic resource for writers!
Anyway, I’m ramping up my writing career — or “upping my game”, as one of the women at the conference encouraged us to do! I’m returning to my pursuit of a traditional book publishing contract. An agent.
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Here’s the fleece, the confirmation that I’m moving in the right direction: I just discovered that someone called Auden posted a huge list of her favorite “Quips and Tips” writing links on Mibba – The Adventurous Writer. Lots of people left comments; here’s the one that really resonated with me:
“I could never trust people who give writerly advice without actually being actual published writers,” says Mr W.H.
Though the sentence needs a bit o’ editing, the sentiment reflects my exact feelings! To me, a real writer is someone who 1) makes money writing; and 2) has been traditionally published.
Laurie's "She Blossoms" Books
Growing Forward When You Can't Go Back offers hope, encouragement, and strength for women walking through loss. My Blossom Tips are fresh and practical - they stem from my own experiences with a schizophrenic mother, foster homes, a devastating family estrangement, and infertility.
How to Let Go of Someone You Love: Powerful Secrets (and Practical Tips!) for Healing Your Heart is filled with comforting and healthy breakup advice. The Blossom Tips will help you loosen unhealthy attachments to the past, seal your heart with peace, and move forward with joy.
When You Miss Him Like Crazy: 25 Lessons to Move You From Broken to Blossoming After a Breakup will help you refocus your life, re-create yourself, and start living fully again! Your spirit will rise and you'll blossom into who you were created to be.
Fellow scribes, what do YOU think it means to be a REAL writer?
Do you feel weird calling yourself a writer? How about a blogger, story teller, poet? I welcome your thoughts below…