The Perks of Being a Writer

In the life of every writer, there has been a moment of epiphany, a realisation that they are different from their peers and friends. Often it comes in childhood, the urge to remember and capture an experience, a feeling or to create something no one else would comprehend.

I wrote my first poem at age six and it amused my teacher, although she hinted that my mother helped me pen the poem about the first spring flower blooming. Since then, writing has been a sporadic hobby which I finally took up seriously in 2012. Why did I shy away from it for so long? Why do I have half a dozen unfinished short stories? Fear.

Writers are fragile beings and their scribbled words and burgeoning ideas always carry a speck of their soul. Thus, revealing such words, which come with so much weight attached, is always an arduous task. Writers aim for perfection in the names of the characters they create, in the setting, in the twists and turns of their plot and the smallest of details. They want to create a story which can be loved and evidently leave them as writers also loved.

Writers can be self-loathing narcissists as stereotypes indicate, but most aren’t.. Writers can also be cat-loving bohemians, but most aren’t (sadly). Most writers, myself included, are torn between having a sentimental and idealist heart and a rational brain, meaning we write for the love of it and deprecate ourselves for being unable to turn our passion into a permanent career path or because our writing does not measure up to Tolstoy or because of that thirteenth rejection letter. Yet, little makes us as happy as writing, even though in the back of our mind there is a little voice telling us to commit to a proper 9 to 5 job. It is every writer’s aim to silence that voice by proving that we are good enough to chase writing and that in the end, it will all be worth it.

Most writers keep their writing a secret. They scribble and type away while the masses are sleeping, their energy peaking from the surge of inspiration of that seventh coffee. While most are sleeping, a writer will create a thing of beauty and probably develop insomnia in the process. Beware of writers who will drop the title of writer a bit too freely in conversation – those are the phonies. A true writer knows the magnitude and  responsibility attached, when it comes to finally dubbing themselves a writer; genuine writers will toil and fight off insecurity until they feel worthy enough to be called writers.

Writers see inspiration and beauty in the tragic and the forgotten. As a writer and a nostalgic, I want to recreate something that cannot be reconstructed; I want to paint history. Writers flirt with melancholy and they are the ones who understand the wars waging within us all. A happy writer struggles to write; well, that’s what I’ve figured out. Writers write because they need to write – it’s an urge and it’s a calling that is bigger than them. If they did not write, they would not be themselves and they would forever be searching for false contentment.

Writers want to be revered, to be remembered, to have their words quoted long after they are dead, but that is not their elementary aim. They want to reach and teach the masses, they want to share an adventure or a pearl of wisdom and be able to no matter how slightly, alter someone’s mind or perception.

People would not become writers if they were in search of money, and a professional writer really is the writer who didn’t give up and never stopped writing. Don’t be discouraged – everyone has a story within them, so share it.

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