You might be a writer if. . .

Below are some of my personal factoids that definitely peg  me as a writer.  Let’s hear yours.  Comment with some of your own.  Let’s have fun with it.  ; )

You sleep with pen and paper next to your bed — and the stove and the couch and the dining table and the shower and the toilet and the. . .

You have a favorite punctuation mark. My editor’s trying to wean me off of em dashes — good luck with that.

You have a favorite pen. Uniball Signo 207 with the comfi-grip in black ink. Uh, what do you mean there are other colors?

You get caught up in plotting your next scene and put the cereal in the fridge, and the milk in the pantry.

The stacks of your old manuscripts and rejection letters officially constitutes a fire hazard.

You desperately want Crayola tub markers so you can write down all that great dialog that comes to you in the shower.

You love restaurants that put a big sheet of paper over the table cloth and leave you with a handful of crayons.

You’re talking to a real, living, breathing person and suddenly stop and listen because one of your characters interrupted you.

You think sleep is way overrated. Who needs more than three hours anyway?

Your novels are backed up on your laptop, your husband’s laptop, two thumb drives, and you’re seriously toying with the idea of getting a safe deposit box.

And finally, you know your a writer if you look at yourself and see a writer. Everyone else looks at you and sees an obsessive-compulsive, anal-retentive insomniac with a pen fetish.

21 Responses to “You might be a writer if. . .”

  1. April 14, 2010 at 8:51 am

    Yep. Nice to have that confirmation.

    Here’s one: You know you’re a writer when you will search for just the right word — online and off — until you either find it or decide to rewrite the sentence. Even if it takes hours.

  2. April 14, 2010 at 9:37 am

    Amen. And even if it wakes you up at 3:30 in the morning. ; )


  3. 3 Terri-Lynne
    April 14, 2010 at 10:52 am

    There are things such as crayola tub markers??? Why was I unaware of this???

    You know you’re a writer if:
    1. You have cats.
    2. You spend hours looking for that right word, find it, and then change the sentence anyway; and this thrills you to no end.
    3. Discovering new words gives you a rush akin to bungee-jumping off a bridge.

  4. April 14, 2010 at 11:36 am

    You know you’re a writer if…

    You think it is normal to go ‘whoohoo’ in the middle of being with friends/at work because you have finally figured out a plot hole.

    I’m forever trying to put things in the wrong places. Chores are fun because Muse can be let loose in my head.

  5. April 14, 2010 at 12:32 pm

    I didn’t know they had CRAYOLA TUB MARKERS! yes…I’ll be forcing myself out of the house just for those today! Here I am frantically trying to remember something every time I take a shower and I have to get out to write it down and now, I can take extra long showers because my characters’ growth won’t be stunted by my short memory.

    And I love ellipses…in a horrible way.

    I love the list. I am a writer.

    I am a writer because I have tried to use a word I’ve made up for my stories in real English situations and felt totally right and wholly justified – if it has a definition, it’s real.
    I am a writer because I renamed myself to say so.

  6. 6 Angela
    April 14, 2010 at 1:53 pm

    … They have TUB MARKERS?! That’s brilliant! I must have them!

    Everything else is absolutely true. Ellipses are awesome and make up way too much of my prose. My favorite pen is the Staples brand gel pen, in black. No other pen will do. And my brother mocks me for having six zip drives and a moleskin journal on every flat surface.

    See? I’m not insane, I’m a writer! (internal voice: and the difference is…)

  7. April 14, 2010 at 2:45 pm

    Love the comments!!


  8. 8 Griffin
    April 14, 2010 at 3:25 pm

    *gasp* Tub markers! I know what I’m buying next time I got to town.

    This is an awesome list.

    Favorite pen: Pentel R.S.V.P. Med. with black ink. I buy them in bulk.

    I’ve never left cereal in the fridge, but I have left the TV remote…

    You know you’re a writer when…

    … you have to be careful how you ask questions. Like asking the librarian if they knew of any books that said what would happen to a person if they were suddenly pulled into outer space (Would their eyes explode or their blood freeze or what?). Or if you could blind someone by injecting a dye the back of their eyes.

    … you find it fascinating how people’s lips move when they look at you, but you’re too busy with a new plot idea to figure out why…

  9. April 14, 2010 at 5:28 pm

    Ellipses are great…can’t get enough of them really. Semicolons are cool, too, though; nothing else is so subtle. And em dashes–how else do you do capture contemporary dialog with all of its starts, stops, and interruptions?

    Stainless steel Parker with .7 pressurized gel. Writes on nearly any surface, at any angle, in any weather (because sometimes you have to haul out the notepad in the snow and hold it against a fence post to write down that great bit of dialog you just figured out or the plot point that had completely evaded you earlier). Flows effortlessly on paper. Ink cartridges last a long time, being oversized and clog resistant, and are available everywhere.

    Though, tub pens–that’s brilliant. And a tablet of some sort I can take along…

    I’m not even going to get started on philosophies of sleep and backups or this will turn into a whole article itself.

  10. April 14, 2010 at 9:35 pm

    Crayola tub markers! Ah-ha moment of the day. 😀

    Love this list!

  11. 11 A.
    April 15, 2010 at 3:06 am

    I’ve got the fire hazard in the form of notes stacked on my desk. And it IS offical. I live in gov’t subsidized housing and failed my first attempt at my annual inspection this year due mostly to the clutter of notes on my desk being a fire hazard. LOL

    You know you’re a writer if–

    you’ve trained yourself to obsessively replay scenes in your head until you have them down–even when you’re supposed to be listening to your friends/coworkers talk so you can respond to them.

    You create soundtracks to at least some of your stories, basing them on mood, just a few lyrics, or just because the music SPEAKS to you.

    You’re so into writing you think up your stories’ next scenes while standing in line at the grocery store, waiting for the bus . . . instead of reading a book.

    You’ve stayed up for at least 20 hours and written the vast majority of them because you’re obsessed with the story.

    You’re willing to write more than one version of a story, or part of a story, in order to determine which you like best.

  12. April 15, 2010 at 3:44 am

    You know you’re a writer…

    when you find yourself talking aloud in strange places – especially the car – as you work out dialog.

    when you’re so engrossed in plotting that you drive clear across town and can remember none of the journey, but you know *exactly* how to fix that plot problem.

    when your favorite topic of conversation is the book you’re working on

    I’m into semi colons and my favorite pen is a Uni-Ball Vision Exact Micro.

    Maybe we need a 12 step program? 😉

  13. May 9, 2010 at 9:44 pm

    You talk to yourself a lot.(e.g. Hmm, what would happen if I wrote about a tortured vampire and a innocent yet clumsy human girl who fall in love? Oh, story idea!! Must get computer!)

    You talk to yourself about talking to yourself. (e.g. ‘Why do I constantly ask my self random things?’)

    When you talk to yourself you often talk to yourself like you’re talking to someone else. (e.g. ‘Have you ever noticed that deliver could mean someone’s liver?’)

    After uttering a profound peice of wisdom like that above, you stare at the cookie in your hand with awe and say, “Wow,this stuff is great for sugar highs…’

    You live off of sugar and caffine (the two greatest things ever discovered!)

    You’ll check your e-mail every day of the week and then dissappear off the face of the earth.

    You’re e-mails tend to be pages long and incredibly random.

    When replying to an e-mail, you’ll never actually address the point of it.

    You tend to collect Bic Stics off the ground like picking pennies off the ground.

    No matter where you are in a room you never have to get up to find a pen/pencil and paper.

    The letters on your keyboard are wearing off. (once a key actually fell off!)

    Your friends and family think that you have carpal tunnel syndrome.

    People think you have A.D.D.

    You think it’d be cool to have A.D.D.

    You constantly start talking in third person, present or past tense.

    You start thinking about making lists like this and start giggling for no “apparent” reason

    Your friends stopped looking at you funny for no apparent reason a loooooong time ago.

    And FINALLY, the one way to tell if you’re a good writer: You failed English 101.

    (copy that into you’re profile if you fit one or more of the descriptions)

  14. May 27, 2010 at 4:25 am

    You see something and want to write about it immediately.

    You or your friends come up with an small idea and shout right away that it can be a good novel.

    You have notes scattered inside your bag.

    Talking about the pen, shouldn’t it change already into laptop? 😀

  15. May 31, 2010 at 2:56 am

    If we work too tired then the mind will be flying everywhere and always emotional. So the brain and physical needs to break even just one hour. Why should the work be enslaved? Would not that create our jobs?

  16. 16 tiffany z
    January 13, 2011 at 2:42 am


    your purse is full of receipts with plots scribbled on them

    and napkins

    and any other handy paper-like object

    you never go anywhere without a pen (there’s always something to scribble on in the world)

    you could be talking feverishly with a friend and suddenly spring out of your seat to go get that winner idea down

    your friends thought you were crazy when they met you, but they got used to it.

    you love yur favorite authors for bringing such an amazing idea into the world, but you hate them too because now you feel pressured to shine wiht our outshine them.

    you have tendency to rant on and on and on with people over a simple statement, but you still consider yourself quiet.

  17. December 27, 2012 at 3:16 pm

    Me agradó la manera en que aborda sobre el tema.
    Seguiré volviendo esta página

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