Writing What You Know

Are you like me, and always finding the advice ‘write what you know’ rather constricting?

 

Recently I came across something that truly freed me from the confines of that advice. It is still writing what you know, but if you don’t know it, Act It Out! Read more by someone who put it much better than me here. It is something¬† I intend on doing soon, and if you do, please let me know how you got on!

I Am a Writer, Aren’t I??

This is a follow on from this post last week. This time it is a personal essay that I am writing about my identity as a writer. The book states:

Write about your identity as a writer in personal essay format. Address questions such as: When did you start calling yourself a writer? If you don’t yet, what keeps you from it?

This is quite a tough one. What is my identity? Am I actually a writer? I have successfully written a novel length manuscript, but never edited it. I have submitted a couple of short stories, which got rejected. Since taking writing seriously, I have learned that I know absolutely nothing about writing! So if you are here, hoping for some writing advice, move along, because I need some too! And if you find any good sites, please put them in the comments below.

So I shall address the first posed question. I have not really called myself a writer. It is currently my dirty little secret. Few people know of it. Why do I not wholly identify with that title? Probably because I haven’t been paid yet – something I am working very hard to rectify!

 

I am really nailing the daily word counts,¬† and reaching out for advice and support. Am I writer? Perhaps. Some say I am. Do I feel like a writer? Not yet, as I don’t earn money from it. I will keep going until I do, and I am very fortunate to have some friends and a supportive family. We writers can be very irritable at times!

Meanwhile, I am hunting a mentor. Do you know anyone who would like to mentor? Please get in touch if you (or someone you know) would like to mentor!

And finally, what about you? What is your identity? And why is that?

I Am A Writer

Hello,, I am Ingrid, and I am a writer. I have been a writer for more years than I remember. I don’t see it as a problem.

No, you haven’t walked into a Writers Anonymous session. This is what I am doing.

I can’t really remember how it came about. I was struggling with frustration and guilt at not writing much. After all, I can’t call myself a writer if I don’t write. So, me being me, thinking the answers lie in a book (Ha! Maybe it is Readers Anonymous instead?) I went on my kindle and entered some search terms. I didn’t feel very writerly, wanted to be more writerly, and most importantly wanted to write more.

I came across a book called ‘On Being A Writer’, and it seemed like the book I needed. It promises habits for a writing life that will last. I must admit I have had this book for some time and I am still on number 1. I am finding it easier each time. What is number 1, and what has that got to do with what I am writing here? I hear you ask.

Number 1 is to identify as a writer, and to say I am a writer. And so I do. Or try to, without the preface ‘I am a mum and….’.And my first exercise is to write about identifying as a writer. It says personal essays and such, but I am going to bear all here.

So for the first part:

When I told my fiance I was a writer, he said ‘I know you are.’ I asked him why he knew that, as I don’t really identify with that title. His reply: ‘Because you write.’

So there you have it! Because I write, I am a writer.

What do you identify with? If you want to identify as a writer, give it a go. Tell someone you trust that you are a writer and see what their response is. Hope it is as positive as mine.

Big Apologies

I have big apologies to make don’t I? To all my readers, I am sorry.

I guess my absence is a variety of things. Initially it was lack of motivation and ill health. Then it was because I had been away and was worried you would tell me off. Then it was lack of passion for the subject(s) I was writing about. And let’s face it! If I am bored writing it, you will be bored reading it. I have been doing a lot of searching and praying for guidance. As a result here I am! And I have exciting news.

I am a writer. It is what I do. It is what I will always do. If I was ever given an option of writing or something else, writing will win nearly all the time. Maybe I will be successful, maybe I won’t. My youngest child starts nursery in September, giving me 3 hours, five days a week to do as I wish. Can you guess what that will be? It won’t be cleaning!
Another thing that I learned is what ‘real’ job I would like to do. I have spent much of my time in hospitals over the past three years, and I see staff doing the quiet things like offering a drink or food. As a teen, my work experience took me to the Princess Royal Hospital in Telford. Due to my age and the fact I wasn’t qualified, what I was allowed to do was very limited. So I took the patients a drink, helped make beds, and remove any toileting receptacles for disposal. It was also here that I saw my first dead body. Luckily, this was before we became a culture of suing. The nurse who found me trying to rouse the dead man ushered me away very quickly and apologetically. I still see him, but I am not traumatised by it. The covers were pulled up, his arms were folded and a red flower was laid next to his head. He looked peaceful. I remember thinking that he was in a weird way for a sleeping man, but each to their own! Anyway, I have digressed. This experience at the hospital is what I would like to do now. I didn’t think there was a job, assumed it was part and parcel of medical staff responsibilities, but no! The job title is Healthcare Support Assistant. This is what I will likely end up doing as a day job, probably regardless of the outcome of my writing.

I have also signed up to be a volunteer blood bike controller.

 

 

All in all, I am happier, more secure and more determined than I have been in a while.

I will be back!