You Are Not a Writer

No, you're not. I know you may think you are because you can hold a pen and put words down on paper with that pen. Or maybe you can type and you think it's magic! and wonderful! and creative! when the words you type turn into sentences, and those sentences turn into paragraphs. You might think, heck, if I can write a paragraph, I can write a story! But you know what? You can't write a story because you 1. never read them and 2. don't know what the heck a story is.

You are not a writer if you:
-think there's no difference between fiction and non-fiction. If you read a story and want to ask the author, 'did this happen' or 'is this true' then you're not a writer
-wrote a poem/menu/newsletter 18 years ago and your mom/co-worker/boy (or girl) friend-at-the-time thought it was great
-have had kids and think, heck, I created life, I can create anything!
-watch more TV than read
-have no sense of humour
-think 'I'm gonna write me a book' and start writing said book for, like, a week here and there, and then abandon that idea like you do all creative ideas in favour of another creative idea like making bracelets or bread or T-shirts with funny sayings
-like the above, get a new! unique! creative idea every couple of days or weeks that you think will sell! sell! sell!
-think you'll make money and be a famous writer like what's-her-name
-make fun of other writers who'd rather write than drink or watch a bad movie
-don't swear
-can't spell
-don't know anything about English grammar and/or think grammar is full of patriarchal rules made to be broken
-think 'why do stories always have to be sad and depressing?'
-think a story actual does not need a problem or suspense to be interesting or a story. In fact you think random words on a page are a story, that it's literature's patriarchal rules that say a story needs a problem and how dare someone published and/or educated tell you otherwise

And finally, you are not a writer if you tell people you are going to be a writer. Writers write. In a room. By themselves. They write because they have to, not 'cause they think it'd be kinda cool to try writing for a while. They would write even if there was no one left on the planet. In fact, they'd be happy no one was on the planet 'cause finally they wouldn't have to deal with wanna-be writers asking them, 'can you read this thing I wrote yesterday while I was waiting for the bus?' They'd finally have some peace and quiet. They'd finally write.