Three reasons you should say it more often
Let’s face it. There are more writers in this world who shy away from calling themselves a ‘writer’ than those who happily and confidently do. And then there are wannabe writers who not only stand on the fringes when it comes to the title of ‘writer’ but also feel dubious, if not a little envious or bitter about why and how other writers refer to themselves as writers. The matter is pretty simple — if you write and you love it, that’s what you are — a writer!
Most writers start out with an abundance of self-doubt. This is inevitable as writers. But how we get over it is important. We have to write through it. When I began writing at thirteen, I certainly did not call myself a writer. I did not call myself a writer well until I had my first book published. But then, no one asked me if I was a writer. I was either called one by my friends who knew about my writing or never asked. However, I know one thing for sure — if ever I were asked, I wouldn’t have shied away from saying, “I am a writer.”
The matter is pretty simple — if you write and you love it, that’s what you are — a writer!
Because, it is important! If you are a writer and if you want to be a good one, the very first step you take, apart from writing with commitment and patience, is to own it. Own the title and say out loud, “I am a writer!”
Professionally, I am qualified as a physician and a counseling professional. But, these days, whenever I introduce myself, I add “I’m a writer, too.” to it. The power embedded in simply allowing yourself to take the title is immense.
So here are a few reasons to say “I am a writer.” and why you should say it often.
It’s a reality check
As a fiction writer and poet, often I have found myself detaching from the real world when I lunge into the ocean of words. I have no doubt that I am a writer because that sort of focus is telling enough. However, many writers find it hard to believe that they love to write and enjoy the process. They fear saying it loud lest they be judged. They recoil the moment someone asks them, “Seriously? You are a writer?” even if it was a harmless expression of incredulity. The negative focus in their thoughts about their craft stops them from entirely assuming the title of a writer.
But, every time you feel this way, say it: “I’m a writer!” and let the realization consume you. We all are writers for different reasons. And as writers, we all read — have read a lot — and its role in making us writers is not small. But then, there are many people who read a lot, even more than we do. Why isn’t every reader turning into a writer?
“But, when people say, Did you always want to be a writer?, I have to say no! I always was a writer.”
I believe there is an inherent dissatisfaction in us at what we have come across so far and an immense desire for more. I think when we write, we are also telling us, “Hey, buddy, this is the book you want to read and nobody is writing it, so I’m gonna do it for you.”
So, when you say, “I’m a writer,” it is a positive affirmation you need everyday to keep writing. It is a reality check which lets you realize that you are indeed a writer.
It’s a confidence-booster
Needless to say and as a continuation to the previous point, positive affirmations have a huge impact in cognition. After a while of exposure to something, be it good or bad, our brain is inclined to believe it. When you constantly tell something to someone, it is bound to get ingrained in them and they are very likely to believe it.
This is a great game to help yourself, too. Say “I’m a writer!” oftener than you do — or maybe write it, if that is better — and you will begin wrapping your head around the idea and eventually, you will work towards it. This is if you are already into writing and feel low on confidence and motivation.
It makes writing a job to take seriously
Writing, unlike other jobs or professions, is often taken lightly. People have trouble accepting it as a full-time career. Our family and friends are not very polite when it comes to addressing writing as a job instead of a hobby. Often, they think it is something we should do on the sidelines and ‘being a writer’ is just not professional enough for their ears.
“A professional writer is an amateur who didn’t quit.”
Eventually, we, too, feel it a little less professional and not good enough to be called a job. We call it our passion and it is right by all means, but writing takes flight and makes a difference only once we take it as a profession.
All jobs have titles and so does writing. Someone who writes is called a writer. So while the word still exists, why not say “I’m a writer,” a bit proudly and take it as a serious job? Once you do, so will others. You can bet on that!
Yes, you’re a writer!
There are probably more reasons to say “I’m a writer,” but part of the reality check in point one is that only writing makes you a writer. We must all be striving to put down words and acknowledging, accepting and owning that we are writers make the process more confident, professional and meaningful. These, in turn, help you to be prolific, making you churn out story after story, whichever genre is your forte.
So, go ahead, write and say, “I am a writer!”
Check out this prose poetry book reading from my upcoming book The Storyteller !
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A blog exploring the art of writing and life as a writer amidst other roles through articles on writing, creativity, books, productivity, self-improvement, better living and parenting.