This writing thing is hard. I’ve always wanted to write, and now here I am writing and what I’ve written pops up on the screen for people to read. Although few (and I do mean a miniscule few!) people are reading what I’ve written, and I’m not writing for money, it doesn’t matter, I’m suddenly a writer. It has become addictive. I constantly think about it, but figuring out something to write about frustrates me at times. I know, and I’ve read, that the inspiration is out there everywhere you turn. I do believe you have to get in the habit of noticing life, and stop barreling through to get to your next appointment, for in between is where the inspiration is. I’m trying to do that, but old habits are hard to break.
Now, saying I’m a writer does not mean that if someone asks me, “Why, what do you do, my dear Carla?” that I would say I’m a writer. I would definitely not say that! I’ve written before, but not lately, so this blog thing is a new-ish journey of self-discovery for me. I could never claim to be a writer in the way that people who write as a profession do. I met a writer, meaning someone who has had her work published, a while back. Not to wax political, but I met her at the Democratic caucus. If you remember, thousands of people showed up unexpectedly at the polls and chaos was the only order. We were standing squished together competing for oxygen in a small and stifling church foyer waiting for the magical moment when the regular voting was complete and the caucus voting would begin. Normally when I stand that close to strangers, I feel a little uncomfortable, that whole invasion of space thing, but we had no choice but to bump cheeks (and I’m not talking about the ones on our faces). We naturally fell into conversation. One person on one side of me said to the person on my other side, “I think I know you, aren’t you the writer that lives in my neighborhood?” Writer? My ears perked up and I followed their conversation for a moment, much like following a tennis match. After a bit, I piped in and asked her what she writes. Her name, well I forget her real name, but her pen name is Adele Ashworth, and she writes historical romances. Somebody deems her writing good enough that she gets paid to write books. Nevermind that I rarely read from the romance genre, she gained instant celebrity status in my eyes.
We talked about how she became a writer, and I won’t go into our discussion here, but I left with a feeling that I had met an interesting and incredibly self-motivating person. I imagined what it would be like to see your work in print and bound, to fill in “writer” on the occupation line of all the mundane forms you have to fill out from time to time, to knock about the house every day in slippers from the coffee pot to your desk, and to be able to make your living by writing stories. While not a glamourous vision, it does sound appealing and satisfying.
I know that a writer is someone who writes. You can still be a writer even though it’s not your occupation. I also know from talking with Adele Ashworth that as a writer she has a life not unlike my own, in that she lives in a similar neighborhood, same community, has a family, and is obviously concerned about the nation. I’m just intrigued by how she and others like her make their living. Now that I’ve started this blog, I have more respect for writers. Just keeping up with this blog is a challenge for me. Meeting Adele Ashworth was a coincidence, and a moment of inspiration for me. I am now on the lookout for inspiration in all its forms…if I can just train myself to notice all the life that occurs between appointments!