Friday, December 9, 2016

14 Signs That You Are Turning Into a Writer

Becoming a writer is a lot like joining a fandom. You think, "Oh, hey. This looks fun. I'll give it a shot!" Then, before you know it, you're sucked into a brand new world full of crazy ideas, sad stories, and insane people. And there's no way out.

Becoming a writer isn't really something you do, it's something you catch. Like the measles. Except there isn't a cure, and you'll spend half of your time wishing there was and the other half you'll spend having the time of your life.

That being said, it can be a nasty shock to wake up in the morning as a Writer. It'd be nice if you could ease into it, right? Spot the symptoms so you have time to prepare.

Well, luckily you can. All you have to do is learn to read the stars and watch for signs of impending writing. Or, if you're lazy, you can just read the below list:
14 Signs That You Are Turning Into a Writer
1. You drink caffeine. All of the caffeine. Most writers take theirs in the form of coffee, though some (like myself) prefer black tea. You may consume energy drinks, but it's generally understood to be more writerly if you're sipping something warm from a mug rather than chugging liquid from a can. Using some kind of cool or nerdy mug is optional, but recommended.

2. You know tons of words, but mispronounce a large fraction of them. Because you've read tons of novels and puttered at creating your own, you have a brain full of interesting words. You know how to spell words like "beneficence," "sophist," and "jocoseness," but you settle for easier synonyms when speaking because what are the chances that you'll say them correctly?

3. You suffer from crippling self doubt. Questioning yourself, your talents, and your reason for existence upon a regular basis is just part of your routine. But...

4. You keep grasping at your dreams anyway. Because you have a story inside of you and you think maybe, just maybe, somebody might need to read it someday. And that's reason enough to keep trying to write, right? Right??

5. You like to eavesdrop. There's no shame in this. Unless you get caught. Or try to blackmail somebody with information you overheard. In which case: Yes. Shame on you. Shame on your cow. But, generally, eavesdropping and people watching is enjoyable to you. People say the most interesting things and can provide multiple sparks of inspiration.

6. Your people skills are questionable. Listening in on conversations? Yes please! Actually being part of a conversation? Ew. I mean, sure. You can get along with people and even pass yourself off as a regular human being. But sometimes you have to reign yourself in. Like when somebody asks, "Oh, do you like to read?" and you have to say, "Oh, yeah. I really do." Rather than screaming, "jieoajdoajo;a! YES. YES!! I have a ton of bookshelves and a kindle and I read all of the time and do you like this book? You do?? Oh my gosh! That character is the BEST!" You'd probably yell all of this while imitating an excited Merida.
Unfortunately, that reaction tends to make people slowly inch away from you and towards a phone, so you've had to cut back. Some people just can't handle awesomeness.

7. You see stories everywhere. And I mean everywhere. On the street corner, driving along the freeway, watching the trees wave in the breeze, seeing a pretty rock on the ground. The world is full of stories and they're all shouting for your attention.

8. You tend to space out a lot. Which is unfortunate. Because then you'll have missed that important piece of information you professor just gave out. Or you'll find your friend has come the end of their story and is asking you "So, what should I do?" and you have to figure out how to worm your way out of the situation. But sometimes your brain is more exciting than your external surroundings. However...

9. When you pay attention, you pay attention. When you aren't being distracted by something else, you are a good listener and a good observer. Like Sherlock Holmes level of attention to detail. Because who knows? There might be a good story in this somewhere.

10. You like wikipedia. Okay, so maybe you're one of the few people who knows about armadillo girdled lizards or the history of gun powder. But that information may come in handy one day. Operative word being "may." And even if if it doesn't, it's still fascinating.

11. People around you ask for help writing things or spelling things. Because you have "writer" stamped all over you and everyone except for yourself recognizes your flair for words.

12. You are either very organized or very not-organized. There is a place for everything and everything is in it's place. You probably have an organizer and multiple journals. Outlines appeal to you, as do spreadsheets and carefully managed time. OR: your room is in chaos, you have sticky notes stuck to random walls, and ideas written on the palm of your hand. You live like a hippy and schedules and order kill your soul. I'm the latter, just in case you can't tell from the state of my room:

13. You are obsessed with odd things. When you like something, you like something all. the. way. You obsess and get absurdly excited, usually over things that other people don't get. Like a minor character from an obscure series. Or Chopin's etudes. Of the Valar from LOTR. Or all things related to Batman '66. Or sans serif font. Or Itty Bittys. You like them. Maybe they're weird, but you like them and they make you happy, so who cares if you go a bit overboard?

14. You love stories. A lot. Books, movies, songs. You spend your time delving into them, trying to learn, soak up new ideas, go on adventures, feel that spark of something excited and happy inside that pops up whenever you're around a good tale.

If you identify with an alarming amount of these, then you're probably turning into a Writer....Or have already become one. At least now you know.

Don't try to argue with me. Don't talk like one of them. You're not. Even if you'd like to be. We both know it's the truth. It's time to stop trying to fit yourself into the "non-writer" box. Let it go.

I'm not gonna lie about the ramifications of this discovery. Friends don't lie. So here's the truth: Being a writer is hard. And scary.

And completely and utterly awesome.

You have a story and a voice like no other. So go for it. Complete the metamorphosis. I may be biased, but the grass is greener over here. In fact, it's not even green. It's all sorts of beautiful colors, and it always smells like dew and sunshine. And there are unicorns. So come on over. We're excited to have you.

Related articles:
10 Things Nobody Tells You About Being A Writer...Until It's Too Late
10 Reasons Why Writers Aren't The Weird Ones
Inside the Creative's Mind: 9 Things You Should Know

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13 comments:

  1. I'M DISPLAYING NEARLY ALL THE SYMPTOMS HALP!!!

    The one I don't have is Number One. I only drink water. How un-writerly, yes? But I don't like coffee. Or black tea. I love got chocolate though... Perhaps I am redeemed?

    Also I am a weird mix or organized and disorganized??? (I like that you said, "you are either really... Or really..." because it's so truuuueee!) I love outlines and multiple journals and aaaaaaalll those things, but my bed/bedroom typically looks like a small tornado (aka me) has passed by.

    Lastly, I love your room. It has a very writerly feel to it. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lol! You have caught the Writer! RUN.

      Just kidding. Being a writer is awesome. And yes, I think eating chocolate redeems you. I mean, it does have caffeine in it... =D

      That's funny about you being both organized and disorganized. I can be organized if I need to be (like at work). But I generally choose not to if it's not necessary. Sounds kind of like what you do. =D

      Thanks for the comment! And I'm glad you like my room. I'm rather fond of it, myself. =D

      Delete
  2. It's your fault you know. Because of you and Susannah I am constantly bombarded with story ideas that interrupt everything. Ok that's only true to an extent because I am a firm believer that writers are born writers, however, the writing plague has affected me much worse because of my exposure to you two. Thanks for that.


    Haha but literately, thanks for everything. Keep being slightly crazy!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lol! I am guilty as charged. But so is Susannah. Mostly Susannah. Actually, it's all Susannah's fault. =D

      Either way, I'm happy you have the writer bug. I bet you'll turn out some amazing stuff! I'll keep being crazy and you keep being your awesome, sweet self! =)

      Delete
  3. Add to the list having weird search histories that might disturb non writers... Like I might be looking up lethal poisons and how to use them but I promise I'm not a murderer

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    Replies
    1. Yep. That too. Writers tend to have a lot of disturbing pieces of knowledge rolling around our heads. =D Good point!

      Delete
  4. Oh, my gosh! This is so me! Some things I didn't even realize I did until just now. :)

    And replying to the above comment, I've once pinned a picture about different death and burial rituals in 42 different cultures on Pinterest...

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    Replies
    1. Lol! That's great. And that burial rituals pin sounds super interesting. Clearly, we are both writers of the highest degree. =D

      Delete
  5. All except 1 and 10, lol

    I'm definitely classified as messy. My room is a literal disaster at the moment.

    And the weird search history one that someone else said! Me! Both violently disturbing and baby name sites, ahaha

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lol! All the baby name sites. =D And 12 out of 14? Certainly a writer! Welcome to the club!

      Delete
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    ReplyDelete
  7. Yes! So glad I read this! I am as weird as writers come and I've become to accept my goofy self. I've been fighting it off for far too many years. The other humans were on to me anyway. I turn cashier experiences & airport observations into riveting stories (to me anyway) and am overly excited about facts, books, people,TV characters, storylines.... Wikipedia really is awesome.
    Wish I could turn being messy & scattered into an art form. ;)

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  8. I read this and realized I have all fourteen signs! I hadn't thought of #13, being obsessed with odd things, as a writers' trait, but it makes sense. We writers try to notice facts and details that other people miss. Then after we notice something cool, we can't help but obsess over it! (For me a few random obsessions are Viking runes...anything about goats...trivia from the TV show Bonanza...you get the picture.)

    ~Ursi

    ReplyDelete

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