6 Things Only Writers Will Understand

6 Things Only Writers Will Understand

Source: photo from  unsplash ; quote adapted from John Muir

Source: photo from unsplash; quote adapted from John Muir

Writers are quirky people. We get the best ideas at the most inopportune times, we dream of being discovered, and we can't fathom when the object of our affection doesn't fall for our mad wordsmith skills. Writers are a breed like no other. 

And there are couple of things only writers will understand. To us, these idiosyncrasies make perfect sense, but to the rest of the world, they just make us persnickety.  

As a writer you... 

1) Have commitment issues

You start out thinking the story you're writing is THE BEST IDEA EVER and a couple of pages later, you think, Nope. It's not. But the trusted few friends you allow to read your stuff say it's good, so you keep chugging along. 

2) Have a notebook collection

You buy pretty, well-made notebooks and fancy pens only to leave the notebooks largely empty and the pens' ink untapped because you hold yourself to such high standards that you fear your writing won't prove worthy of these fine instruments. The fact that you prefer the ease of the computer for writing and editing does nothing to alleviate this. 

3) Cannot, CANNOT buy notebooks online

You absolutely cannot buy aforementioned notebook online because you need to investigate it in person first. Is the paper acid-free and archival quality? Are the pages blank, lined, or grid?How much space is between each line and how does that measure against my natural handwriting? Is it bound with coptic stitching so I can open the notebook flat? Will the spirals on that notebook get in the way of my hand if I choose to write on the back of the page? Are the pages glued in? Because that will NOT do. Does the notebook come with a built in ribbon bookmark? Is there a flap or some sort of closure so the pages don't get damaged?  How many pages are there? And considering the average amount I write per day, how long will this notebook last? 

4) Have a "literary estate"

It doesn't have to be fancy or formal, but you've got a drawer, a file cabinet, a box in the closet, or an old suitcase in the attic full of your literary estate. That can include notebooks that have been filled, early drafts of your novel, rejection letters from publishers, early short stories that you want no one to find until after your death, and marked up pieces from your college creative writing class.

After you're a famous writer, then you'll be a dead famous writer and you want to leave your raving fans something to discover after you're gone. While alive, you have told one person--a best friend or spouse--of the existence of this literary estate, where to find it, and what to do with it. You have Googled how long acid-free archival paper will last under various conditions and have considered photographing your work to ensure it'll live on long after you, but then you decide to leave that to your adoring public after you're gone and just get back to writing. 

5) Don't have much faith in the tools of the trade

Despite adoring writing instruments, you don't have much faith in them. The ink in that felt pen comes out too thick, so it won't last more than a month. The ink doesn't dry fast enough with those ball point pens, so everything I write will get smudged (which is especially true if you're a lefty). Do those 7 Year Pens really last 7 years? I mean, permanent markers aren't really permanent, so you have cause for concern. 

6) Can't ignore the call of the writing muse

Whether it's in the shower or in the middle of an outing with friends or 4:35am on a Saturday morning when you want nothing more than to sleep, the writing muse shoots a Cupid's arrow through your heart and it melts right into your gooey core. You get that sudden, inexplicable urge to write and you can't ignore the call. The shower water will run cold, your friends dawdle on their phones, and your partner will roll over in bed, shielding eyes from the light of your desk lamp. But you'll have that perfect piece of prose and that makes it all worthwhile.  



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