Really, it’s not very romantic at all…or is it?

I was spotted by some mommies when I was sitting with my laptop writing in one of our local coffee shops.


“Ohhhhh,” they said. “Look at you. You have the best job ever!”

I couldn’t stop myself–laughter poured out of me, until both ladies were looking at each other, questioning my sanity I could only suppose.

You see, people–non-writers that is–have a romantic notion of what it is to be a writer. They see me curled up alone at a table. My hair piled up in a high bun, a thick scarf wrapped tightly around my shoulders and neck, a large latte in front of me. They see comfort, coziness, self-indulgence. They imagine me spending my days idly writing to my heart’s content while the real world continues on with its demands.

They don’t see me screaming inside because I’ve rewritten a scene a hundred times minimum and it’s still not quite right. Or lying awake at night figuring out plot structures that have been evading me for what feels like eternity. Or when I get super grumpy (on an almost daily basis) because there is just not enough waking hours for me to accomplish what I aim to, because–yes, the demands of the real world still affect writers. And they don’t see me wondering what the &*^&* I’m doing this for–because it’s not like any money is involved. So, in a sense, it’s not a job at all.

They only see me doing exactly what I want.

And do you know what? They’re right.

I get to disappear into a world, one that lets me explore it fully. Nowhere else do I get to go inside people’s heads and know them as I do my characters. Nowhere else do I get to stop and look around, and decide what’s best, and what obstacles are needed. And nowhere else do I get to play with words and story.

I stopped laughing and said,

“It’s hard. Writing is not easy. But, yes, it’s the best job ever.”


18 thoughts on “Really, it’s not very romantic at all…or is it?

  1. It’s the closest one gets to playing “god”…we create our own worlds and make them as idyllic or as chaotic as we choose and, if writing sci-fi or fantasy fiction, we can even bring to life creatures and beings that exisit nowhere else, not even in anybody else’s imagination – since the run-of-the-mill human protagnosists are usually “types” that already exist in one form or another in real life and in fiction, while a ten-foot fluttermole with fangs and cuddly, velvety fur is entirely a figment of my imagination…at least I hope it is!

    Being a writer is the BEST job in the world…even if mostly unpaid and undervalued by all around us:) It’s the greatest adventure we could ever embark on…hand me my satchel, Samweis Gamshie, let’s hit the road.

    1. I thought it was doctors who had a god complex! lol

      Actually, this week I was writing out a summary to a fellow writer and said something about how each and every scene needs to have a higher design in the grand scheme of things–and you know what? I thought of this very same god complex! I threw the notion out the window though…preferring to remain blisfully humble! lol

      My bag is packed, I’m following you, Maria 🙂

      1. Grin…I do believe it is our desire to right the wrongs of this world and to bring order to the chaos that makes us writers in the first place. And of course, all good writing has a higher design or we would never end up with literature that appeals across the ages, spans generations and cultural differences.

        Glad to hear you’re joining me on our writer’s Mount Olympus occasionally:)

      2. Hmm, I like your take on it, Maria. Not sure I’ve ever quite thought of it like that, but it makes sense. Order to the chaos. I heard once that stories are linked with evolution, that stories are told for us to learn how to cope with primal fears–it all ties together, doesn’t it?

      3. That’s certainly reminiscent of Grimm’s Fairytales. It is interesting, when researching folk tales, that so many cultures have the same “types” of stories and the same “types” of protagonists and villains. It makes me think that a set number of “first” stories were told around the fire when we lived in caves and talked with grunts and our hands. Then, when humans/Neanderthals split and migrated, we took those stories with us and spread them on our migratory route.

      1. That’s how I felt when I was in the lab, Stephanie. I had such different priorities from the rest of the researchers, I often made others frustrated. Oh well, at least we found what we need! It’s a good thing 🙂

  2. You forgot about the persistent feelings of self-doubt that never seems to want to leave which also contributes to the insomnia but otherwise you’re pretty spot-on! 😀

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