Yes, You’re A “Real” Writer

The definition of what a writer is has been debated within the writing community for ages. What are the parameters? What do you have to have accomplished in order to be considered one? Do you have to finish a novel? Publish something? Get picked up by one of the Big Five houses? Do you need to be on the New York Times bestseller list?

But here’s the thing: if you think you’re a writer, you are one.

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Here’s the thing: we don’t need to have a slightly-overweight-turned-lean-warrior girl searching for her kidnapped father for there to be moral ambiguity. That’s like saying a story can’t have drama in it unless there’s a love triangle, or a manuscript doesn’t have any suspense in it unless it’s a murder-mystery. The truth you’re not seeing is those dumb high school stories can be rich with moral ambiguity, too.

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Why Trying to Get Published Sucks

Finally, my manuscript was complete. Finished. Fini. Terminado. Finito. I was done. I felt like the proud mother of an extraordinarily unconventional child. I could lay my characters to rest, content in the knowledge that I’d left them where they were supposed to be, that I’d solved their problems. I had succeeded—I’d finished writing the monstrosity that had occupied a space in the back of my mind for the last fourteen months. Now, all I’ll have to do is edit this thing, I’d thought to myself, a peaceful smile dancing upon my lips.
I was wrong. So, so wrong.

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