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Calling Myself A Writer

Kevin Craig

My issue, as a w-r-i-t-e-r, is giving myself the validation to write. Sometimes I wonder what the heck I'm doing! Why do I have this insatiable drive to form sentences that form paragraphs, which in turn lead to stories? I ask myself when this quicksilver desire will end. I would certainly sleep better at night without this need to write.

           I tell myself that being a writer is not about being published. I consider myself one of the most prolifically non-published writers in the world, or at least Canada. Neither is being a writer about the stack of rejection letters I'm saving up to show the world that every publication in Canada said that I could not write.

           Those rejection letters may be found piling up in the back seat of my car. I imagine myself getting into an accident and having these letters strewn across the highway, billowing in the breeze. When the rescue vehicles arrive one of the crew will pick up a rejection letter, hold it up and call out, "Never mind guys, he's a failed writer," at which point they will get back into their vehicles, turn off their sirens and quietly drive away.

           But I digress. The steely-eyed determination that keeps me waking up at 3:00 am to write ideas on the pad of paper on my bedside table does not make me a writer. Zoning out on the conversation at a party because I decide to storyboard my latest project in my head does not make me a writer. So what gives me the right to call myself something that I hold in such high esteem? It seems blasphemous to even suggest to myself that I am a w-r-i-t-e-r!

           What makes me a writer? Let's go back to the scene of that imagined highway accident, where the emergency crews decide to leave me stuck in the burning car. I guarantee you that I would have my head stuck out the window, screaming at the top of my lungs, "Please God, somebody get me a pen and paper! I need to get this down!"

           I am a writer. Today I am beginning to accept this fact. I am a writer because I need to get this down!

About the Author (click here) © 2003 Kevin Craig, all rights reserved
 appears here by permission

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