The writing community can be a rather reclusive bunch. We tend to hole up in our homes, furiously tapping away at our keyboards, and when we do happen to go outside, it’s usually with our laptop in tow. Because if I have going outside – and you know I don’t like going outside – I can at least sit in a library or coffee shop and get some work done.
Maybe some of have writer friends, and wish to learn how to understand them? Or maybe you’re a writer yourself, and can relate to the fact that many don’t know what it’s like to be a writer. Either way, here are 7 things about writers that you may or may not have known.
1. We don’t get any sleep.
Do not be fooled. Even if I say I went to bed at 9, chances are that I didn’t actually fall asleep until 12:30, because my brain thought up a new idea for a story.
2. Coffee runs through our veins.
Not to be confused with blood. No no no, in order to cope with getting no sleep, our blood has been replaced by a constant stream of caffeine, replenished by my morning cup of life juice (otherwise known as coffee). If your writer friend doesn’t like coffee, adequate substitutes include soda, energy drinks, or any other form of caffeine infused beverage that may or may not cause us to drop dead one day.
In fact, I’m probably comparatively tame with how much coffee I drink, because I get migraines if I drink too much caffeine, so I watch my coffee intake carefully. But I know plenty of people that drink upwards of four cups a day, and pull all-nighters with double-shot after double-shot like it’s nothing.
3. We think about our characters as real people.
They follow us around like little annoying guardian angels. If guardian angels did an imaginary equivalent of tapping you on the shoulder and saying, “Hey. Hey, remember me? Remember that scene that you can’t wait to write about me? And that epic backstory I have?”
Furthermore, we cannot seem to decide whether to think of our characters as close friends, or children, or our mortal creations which we are the sovereign gods of.
4. Not writing makes us crazy.
I like to joke that I write all the time because it keeps me sane. But it’s not really a joke. When I can’t write (like when I go to camp where I’m not allowed to bring my laptop, or when I’m just super busy) I get very twitchy and cranky. I remember last year, after coming home from summer camp, I spent the next few days holed up with my laptop for days. I wonder if my friends thought I had died…
5. We are not socially adept.
Again, do not be fooled. If you’re talking to a writer at, say, a party, or a meeting, or at work, or at school…or any other setting where they are around other people…chances are that we would rather be at home, writing. And I don’t know that this goes for everybody, but I don’t really know how to act in social situations. My theory is that all that talking with our characters (essentially talking to ourselves) has done something to my brain so I no longer know how to talk to other humans.
6. We only like to write what we want to write.
I don’t know why I even have to say this: I do not like essays. I don’t like writing them, I don’t like reading them, and I certainly don’t like being assigned them in school. For some reason, all the people in my life that know I’m a writer assume that I must be Hermione Granger, and an essay in English class is fun. But I’m not even fully convinced that Hermione liked writing all her essays. No, when I say I like writing, I mean I like creative writing. Meaning. Not. Essays.
Whatever kind of writing it is that your writer friend does – poetry, stories, blogging (*waves*) – that is the kind of writing that they love to do. Not necessarily all kinds of writing.
7. We don’t know what we’re doing.
Maybe this doesn’t apply to writers who do their thing full time as a career. But for the most part, though we may say that we are experts…yeah, we’re not. I’ve been writing for 5 years on my own, but I’m still learning a lot. It’s still a challenge to construct a story, and every time one sits down at the laptop to start a new one, it’s a completely different experience from the last story I wrote. So again, do not be fooled. We’re all just a bunch of humans trying to figure out our craft.
So there you have it, a handful of secrets from the writing community divulged for your enjoyment. If you’re a writer (or have any writer friends) let me know if any of these ring true! (cause I’m so curious🤔)
And as always, have a lovely day and I’ll see you again soon!