I Don’t Want to Be a Writer… But I Am

I don’t want to be a writer but I can’t stop writing. That’s a lie. Let me start over…

I can’t stop writing in my head. I rarely write anything down. Instead, I lie awake at night until all hours of the morning while snippets of stories, true and not so true, float around in my head (this is probably the cause of my undying love of coffee).

Obviously, I do my best thinking at night but I also stumble upon some wonderful epiphanies while in the shower. I have often longed for the invention of waterproof paper to record these wonderful ideas that pop into my head while I shampoo. Alas, once my hair is rinsed and the water is turned off, the brilliance is gone never to be found again in the same way.

In my head I have chapters upon chapters, vignette after vignette. I have tales and truths that will never be told. In my possession I have a black notebook with 200 sheets of paper contained within. Each page is filled with half-spun tales, harebrained story ideas gone awry, and memories from my childhood that did not make it to fruition on paper. Nobody will ever read the darkest parts of my soul.

One might wonder why I have two writing jobs along with my “real” job. Another mystery revolves around why I am getting a degree in English Literature with plans to go to graduate school. A pertinent question would also include: why the heck are you taking a creative non-fiction writing class?

I will never be a prolific writer. Although, that idea does not seem that difficult these days. Apparently, all one needs to do is write a young adult novel involving sparkly vampires or teenagers fighting for their lives in a dystopian world. I don’t want to do that. I do want to do that. I don’t know what I want to do.

With my whole life ahead of me and the world at my fingertips I don’t know what is in store for my future. I have so many worlds in my head, so many stories yearning to be told, so many memories that are asking for a voice. Perhaps one day I will let them speak for themselves. Right now, however, I am content with keeping the voices in my head, living in quiet obscurity. I might not get a full eight hours of sleep while they are waiting, but at least I can still sleep at night knowing they are safe.

By InnatelyKait

I am an art history student extraordinaire doing research on Hellenistic Sculpture in Ancient Greece. I also moonlight as a multitasking office assistant. Yes, I am really that awesome. In a past life (or career really) I was a photographer.

Chocolate and ugly baby animals keep me from being as awesome as I could be. I know all the names of the cats in my building (but not the names of their humans) so I guess I am the crazy cat neighbor.

2 replies on “I Don’t Want to Be a Writer… But I Am”

Since you didn’t ask for advice, and since I haven’t been at P-Mag for a little bit, let me barge in and tell you how to live your life! That’s always charming, no?

I’m afraid your initial diagnosis is correct and you are, in fact, a writer. You haven’t written a lot, but you’ve written some down in a notebook despite yourself, so that’s pretty clear evidence. Personally, I don’t think it’s healthy for writers and artists not to do their thing. That’s one idea I share with Julia Cameron, the creator of The Artist’s Way, which many “blocked” artists like you have found useful. She’s a little goofy and New Agey, but her methods are sound.

What’s missing from your essay are the reasons why you don’t want to write. Is it because it’s hard translating those those inspired ideas to paper or computer screen, and you’re afraid they’ll get ruined in the process? It is hard, God knows, but it gets easier the more you do it. Are you afraid of failure? Writing does involve a whole lot of it, but that also gets easier with practice. I eat rejections for breakfast! :) Even if you never publish, having a completed story or other piece you wrote yourself is a satisfying thing, in my opinion.

So I think you should write. But I’m just some random, annoying lady on the Internet, so it doesn’t really matter what I think!

Leave a Reply