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It’s hard enough to slog away at the craft of writing without having to explain yourself along the way. What have you written? Why haven’t I ever heard of you? So, you’re a real writer? If you’re a doctor, no one asks you if you’re a “real” doctor—why isn’t the same courtesy afforded to writers?
Or how about the people who imply that they, too, could easily be a published author if only they had a wee bit more free time. It’s a frustrating career to explain at any rate. And if you recognize a version of the following conversation, you have our sympathy.
Oooh, you’re a writer? Have I ever heard of you?
Got any of your books at Barnes and Noble? Like Stephen King?
No, not yet.
Oh, so it’s just a hobby then?
I used to write too. In high school.
Yeah, I used to scrawl graffiti on the bathroom walls too, but that doesn’t make me a writer.
Gosh, it’s so romantic to be a writer. Maybe someday I’ll write a book and get rich!
Yes, I’m sure you will. It’s virtually guaranteed.
Hey, you should send your stuff to a publisher!
Hey, I already thought of that, but thanks for the brilliant idea!
So, what do you write?
Oh, you know, those little warning labels on wart removal packages. Oh, and the instructions on jars of wrinkle cream.
Where do you get your ideas?
I bid for them on eBay. Sometimes there’s a two-for-one special at the dollar store.
Hey, I know what you should write about! My cousin has this friend, you know, this real interesting guy who…
Sorry. Must go. The smack-your-face-against-a-wall store is having a sale today, and I wouldn’t want to miss it.
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