What makes one a writer?

Many writers are weary of calling themselves writers. After all, what qualifies one to be a (pause for dramatic breath) a “writer”?

Does producing a train of mysteries like Agatha Christie make you one? Maybe being published by glossy magazines? Or simply by collecting the most blog hits on your experiments in the kitchen?

Or how about when you admit you are a writer around a group of strangers, surprising yourself? A declaration like that will culminate into a moment, that moment being the ability to recognize your own drive for writing.

Then you begin in earnest, with gusto, writing about all things that matter and some that don’t, starting a blog, or pestering friends and family to read your short stories or poems.

For a writer every experience is worth documenting. A writer pens thoughts of a nasty break up, an extraterrestrial fantasy, a half-remembered dream, a piece of short fiction, the skeleton of a novel, a memoir about one’s mother, or poems about one’s cat in the monsoons.

A writer will have the willingness, even a compulsion, to re-imagine sentences, let thoughts stretch and bounce back into a new form.

Is that enough to know you are a writer?

The moment when your chest is puffed out in bravery, waiting for the arrows of a critique to come hit your text, knowing well they can only poke but never destroy.

That’s when you know you are a writer.

What do you think? When did you know you were a writer?
Share your experiences with us. Leave us a comment. 🙂

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About bangalorewritersworkshop

Bangalore Writers Workshop (BWW) is interested in fostering the creative mind, encouraging a community, and making writers aware of who they are as creators of text. Bangalore Writers Workshop is a unique, effective, and interactive method of bringing a group of writers together and allowing them to study the craft of writing while simultaneously receiving constructive feedback on their own work. BWW uses the workshop method. We run intensive creative writing workshops with small groups in Bangalore. Our groups are fuelled by passion and the creative energy of people with diverse life experiences. Find out more on our website. www. Bangalorewriters.com
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14 Responses to What makes one a writer?

  1. Pingback: And where went the written word? « Oxy-Moron

  2. Mukta says:

    Lovely post! Writer, moi? I do not know if I qualify as one. But yes, I try and put into words things that move me, things that I find funny and sometimes things that are just in my head. I must confess that I have written very little in the last couple of years. But hope floats and maybe a platform like BWW will be the perfect reason to get off my backside and start writing again! Thank you Bhumika!

  3. Andaleeb says:

    For me the moment came when I swiveled on my father’s chair and sat at his desk and felt such power holding a notepad before me and a pencil in my hands. I was ten I think. 🙂 That’s the moment I knew I wanted to be a writer.

    • bangalorewritersworkshop says:

      Oh paper and pencil! We know the complete seduction of the smell of paper and the feel of a pencil in our hands. That would have been a seminal moment. 🙂 Thank you so much for sharing.

  4. I don’t think I am a writer. I just have strong opinions and a waspish tongue. Or so I’ve been told. I think I decided I was a writer soon after my first “published” work in my school magazine at the age of 6. I hadn’t a choice really. Look how my drawings turned out. I knew I’d never make it as an artist. So writing it was. (http://a-saltedpeanut.blogspot.com/2011/04/letter-to-my-six-year-old-self.html)

    🙂

    • bangalorewritersworkshop says:

      LOL. Enjoyed the post. We are so glad you didn’t have an aptitude for drawing. Though a combination would have made you more than a genius. 🙂 Thank you for sharing.

  5. Great post thanks. I really enjoyed it very much. You have excellent content on your blog.

  6. repmovsd says:

    I found I was a writer when I chanced upon everything2.com and said – Damn I can do this! Words are nuts and bolts to me, and I seem to always be able to find the right size to assemble my creations. I like to write in a derivative fashion, imitating certain styles and mores of my favorite authors. Often writing is like doing gymnastic feats to me, so I sometimes indulge in writing crazy pieces like one without using ‘E’ or one using all the words that are found on a computer keyboard. I once made up a new alliterative description of my then love-of-my-life every night when i wished her good night, for weeks.
    I’ve found I write best when I am in love, or just out of it… whether or not what I wrote has any connection to romance.

    • bangalorewritersworkshop says:

      What a fun, fantastic game to play! We are inspired. We are going to try it too. Thank you for sharing. 🙂

  7. I’m an oblivious person. I have been writing and making stories since childhood and I realized just two years ago that I am a writer. Yeah, it only took me around 25 years to realize that I’ve been writing all this time and I should make something out of it. Sheesh!

    • bangalorewritersworkshop says:

      Thank you, Kate. Better late than never as they say. Some of us realised rather late that we could actually make something out of our writing too, so you see, you are not alone. 🙂

  8. dante668 says:

    I knew I was a writer when I discovered I possessed two things: a lot of stories to be told, and the talent and will to get them down in some form for others to read. To me, what defines a writer is the will to write, and to slog through the crap that results and find those gems that other people will want to read.

    • bangalorewritersworkshop says:

      Someday, we’d love to associate with you. 🙂 Thank you so much. You are the first person to comment on our blog. We are super thrilled and super thankful. Do keep reading us and share your thoughts on the writing process.

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