On Being A Fake

Fake Eyelashes

About as real, and about as useful.  (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is an actual conversation I had:

Me: So, what kind of stuff do you like to do?

Other Person: I’m a writer.

Me: Really? That’s great! What do you write? Or do you have more than one project?

Other Person: No, just the one. I like to devote myself fully to an idea. I’ve got this epic cycle, where the fate of worlds hangs in the balance*. It draws on the philosophies of Buddha and Richard Dawkins. It’s incredible.

Me: Wow, that’s a hell of an undertaking. How far along are you?

Other Person: Oh, I haven’t started. But I’ve been thinking about it for a decade.

Me: ….

Other Person: It’s going to be awesome.

Other Person, you are not a writer. You have not written, ergo you are not a writer. You’re a thinker, and, you know, congratulations on that. I hear Rodin did a sculpture of you. But until the moment you put pen to paper or fingers to keys**, you are not a writer.

You are a fake.

You’re like a person who calls themselves a fighter pilot because they’ve seen Top Gun 400 times. If thinking about things was all it took to be allowed to call yourself by their title, I would by now be an expert marksman, world-class trauma surgeon, and have the ability to communicate telepathically with machines. But, alas, I am not. And I don’t go around pretending to be.***

We all have the potential to do things. But, until we do them, that’s all it is: potential.

You want to be a writer? Go write. Then you are a writer. You might not be a published writer, or a financially independent writer, or even a good writer. But those are qualifiers. You’ve written: you are a fucking writer. Congratulations.

Until then, stop wasting my time.

*All right, I can’t actually remember what they said. But it was some variant of ‘big thing that will take the rest of my life’.
**Or, given the timeline this guy is on, put brain to the Automatic Thought Enscribing Machine.

***Except when I try to take control of the back hoes at construction sites.


5 thoughts on “On Being A Fake

  1. Why is it that people will pop out with”I’m writing a short story/book/novel.” And then they say”I haven’t started/finished it yet.” Sighs. I still get funny looks when I tell people what I write which is dark fiction/fantasy/erotica. Smiles. Next time just walk away from the idiot. Keep up the great bolg content. Hugs.

    • The funny looks you get from people are just because they really want to read what you’ve written, but are too embarrassed to ask.

      And if I walk away from all the idiots, what would I have to blog about?

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