Welcome to my Monday pep talk. It seems the naysayers and critics are out in force. Why is it the common masses have devolved into grumbling malcontents? It seems the greater percentage of the population spends more time complaining than anything else. ARRRGGGHHHH! Which is why I give myself these pep talks. What if malcontentment was the first sign of zombification? I’d have to learn to survive! So in the preventative effort of avoiding being turned into a zombie, here’s my top ten reasons why being a writer rocks.
- Imaginations: Who else can come up with the stuff that makes excellent movies, excellent books? Regardless of the genre, the worlds that writers create takes us to magical places. Whether it’s Neverland, Narnia, or Middle Earth, the deep magic of the writer’s imagination fuels the reader to experience dangerous thrilling situations without ever being in physical danger.
- Deep Pools: Writer’s tap those deep inner recesses that common folk lock away behind padlocked doors. Some suppress it with Xanax, some with Seagram’s. You know all those times in movies when you are yelling at the actor on the screen “Don’t go in there!”? Writers are the twisted individuals that put the “scare” behind the door. A writer’s mind has more twists and turns and underground tunnels than the world’s best rollercoaster. Don’t go into the deep – it’s where the monsters reside. Unless you’re the writer, then they are your pets.
- Power: Depending on what we write, writers can rule the world. Disagree? Consider the following: the Harry Potter phenomenon, created by writer J.K. Rowling; True Blood – Charlaine Harris; Game of Thrones – George R. R. Martin; The Twilight phenomenon – Stephanie Meyers. This is the type of success the rest of us strive for. The power to influence the minds of an entire generation; and crossover to some of the other generations as well. We really can rule the world. At least the world we create in our minds.
- Therapy: Both sides of this coin: those that employ therapists, therefore helping the economy by keeping at least one therapist employed. and those that avoid therapy by the cathartic by-product of their writing. I’ve heard arguments for demonic exorcism, but I’m not convinced.
- Pride: You know all those people who tell you “Get a real job” ? Think about the pride that we provide for them. Without a creative, specifically a writer, those working stiffs might not feel so high and mighty about themselves that are so inclined to criticize our daily pursuit. When the big day comes, and they are scratching their heads or their butts, wondering how it suddenly happened for us, we can take pride in every single hour that we have labored in our pursuits, knowing that we didn’t give up our dreams. Yeah, like sweating blood is for wimps.
- Tensile: (tnsl, -sl)
adj.1. Of or relating to tension.2. Capable of being stretched or extended; ductile.
3. capable of being shaped or bent or drawn out; “ductile copper”; “malleable metals such as gold”; “they soaked the leather to made it pliable”; “pliant molten glass”; “made of highly tensile steel alloy” There is no way on this green earth that a writer can endure the hardships, the financial strains, and emotional frustrations of the writer’s life without developing some brass. Yeah, notice those descriptives? Bent, gold, malleable – oh yeah, I could so go on a tangent there . * OK secret huddle – yeah, I’m telling you that writers learn to grow a pair, whether they be cahoneys or casabas* Don’t piss off your writer friends, they are made of tougher stuff than you think.
- Sense of Humor If you don’t learn to laugh, you’ll end up back at number four paying for Dr. Flabio’s Ferrari. We develop our sense of humor, laughing at ourselves and our failures. You know that old thing of “this will be funny – someday.” At the moment the situation may seem bleak, but it’s subject to change. Circumstances always change. Great writers learn to not take life so seriously.
- Observative Powers We live in the same world as everyone else, well mostly. We observe the same daily routines as those around us, yet we can see inspiration all the time. Example: That little old man who lives down the street using a walker. Most people see him as a harmless old man, maybe a cranky old man who doesn’t like the neighborhood boys in his yard. A writer however can create an entire life for the man. What if he was a former criminal? Maybe he robbed banks. Maybe he was a murderer that served time, or never got caught. What if he was the romantic sort in his youth? He romanced his wife, spent several happy years until cancer took her and now he fights putting a bullet in his brain every day. Raw material is all around us. The non-writer walks by and never sees it, but a writer takes notice of details.
- Devious Minds Refer back to Number 6 when I said don’t piss off your writer friend. Yeah, we have devious minds. We will kill you in our books. It fuels our antagonists, and provides plot points to our work. Devising torturous methods for the character you become to suffer. It’s usually not a quick death either. That would be too simple, too compassionate. It’s best really that you don’t find out what lurks behind door number 3.
- We Are Writers! Come on, did you really have to read all ten to realize that we as writers are more than the average bear.? Most of us work other jobs. Sometimes multiple other jobs. It’s not what gives us satisfaction. For a writer, satisfaction will never come without engaging in the act of writing. It’s our life blood poured onto the pages, oozing out from our finger tips, casting a magical spell over the reader as well as a euphoria within ourselves. It may sound weird for some – but the writers will get it. Even if we do take a day job, we still write; sometimes in secret, sometimes in public. It’s our obsession.