When is it okay to call yourself a writer?

First of all, LOOK!  One Crafty Lady went and got herself a facelift… er… a new free theme (!).  What do you think of my new digs?

I thought I’d celebrate the recent crossing of 100 posts on the blog (this one here is 110) by dressing her up in fancy new clothes and offering my reflections on the journey to becoming the writer I am today.

Pondering a post. Just another day in the office…

I first started writing online in 2009 while I was finishing up my masters degree in Kinesiology.  I was creating static content for Art Intercepts, but began dabbling in blogging to express more opinion-based topics that I wanted to discuss with other dancers.  I kept a little private blog between myself and my friend Erin as we traversed life, and One Crafty Lady was born upon her moving to Africa to work for the Peace Corps.

Even though I’ve been writing ever since, I didn’t really start calling myself “a writer” until this summer.  I guess I didn’t feel like I could because writing has generally been a hobby, an extra-curricular, something I do for fun.  People that play volleyball in their spare time can’t exactly call themselves “volleyball players” on their Linked-In profiles, right?

Over the past three years I’ve gone through four blogs (not including the two I have now), a couple hundred posts, and about 600 tags.  I’ve also created 3 columns on other sites (with a fourth pending), 2 magazine articles, and a gaggle of guest posts.  It feels really weird getting pitches from other writers and publications; it feels even weirder when you find out you’ve been added to someone’s press list.

You mean, people care enough about what I have to say to send me their press releases?  How cool is that?!?  I’ve either created a reputation of “crazy and incapable of saying no”, or I am now doing professionally what I like to do personally.

Isn’t that kind of everyone’s dream?  

Writing has become an important aspect of my voice in the dance community, my professional life at UIC (each of my 300 students is required to keep a fitness “blog” on our internal class site), and my personal life.  What started out as a hobby is now a huge part of who I am and what I do, regardless of whether or not I get paid.  Because writing permeates all those other aspects of my life, I guess I kind of AM getting paid – essentially.

I’m embarking on two rather big projects: one with friends and collaborators in the blogging community and one on my own.  Starting these (yet to be announced) projects, in conjunction with presenting at Dance/USA with a panel of dance bloggers this summer sealed the deal.

I’m a writer.

When is it okay to give yourself the title of writer?  When you have the confidence to own it.

…and I do.

5 thoughts on “When is it okay to call yourself a writer?”

  1. It’s strange, I never really considered calling myself a writer – despite my blog having over 1000 posts on it and many articles published elsewhere, an erotic story in an anthology and a small book on Kindle – until one of my (online) friends told me I should call myself a writer. I guess it’s a sort of inner click that you need. There are so many other things we want to be – traveler, student, lover, whatever – that the real person needs pointing out by someone else.

    1. Viki, I can completely relate. Ultimately, we are only writers if we are willing to call ourselves out, but sometimes someone else has to first! Thanks for reading and sharing, LW

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