Monday, January 16, 2006

What Makes A Writer?

I want to be a writer. I always have. But what makes a writer? Is it a person who publishes? Or is it the person who doesn’t have the confidence to finish her work? Is it both? Can a person who never shows what she writes be considered a writer? Are a writer and an author two different things? Looking for Irish writers for my website, I found something interesting. When I looked up Irish writers, I found a few notables. When I looked up Irish dramatists, poets, historians, authors, playwrights, I found many names. They were listed under specifics as to what they wrote, not the generic term “writer”.

So am I a writer? Does this blog make me a writer or a diarist? Does the poetry I wrote so long ago make me a poet or former poet? What about the short stories I wrote? What do they make me?

What do my own feelings make me? When I find that last printer’ mark and write the history for the Albright Library, will I be an historian? When I finish my story about Phineas Pumpkinhead will I be an author even though it’s not published? What about the Changeling Cat story rattling around in my brain and notes, or the vampires? Will I still just be a writer: a person who uses the written word to communicate and tell stories, if only to herself? Or will I be something else entirely?

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