The Horrors of Non-Writers & Writing in Public (Plus a Resolution to the Last Post)

We went to the park earlier, so my siblings could play with a few other kids their age.  Nobody was there my age, so, of course, I brought my notebooks.  I unfortunately didn’t get to do really any writing (about 70 words all in total), since I ended up chasing the two year old all around (he had fun going down the shortest slide there and saying “Wheeee!” almost after he got to the bottom).  But anyway, we got there, and I sat down and pulled my notebook out, all ready to continue with the scene I’d started this morning.  One of my mom’s homeschool friends sees me, and she’s like, “What’re you writing?”

My response, of course is just the vague statement of, “A story.”

And so she goes, “Of what?”

For a moment, I panicked.  I almost thought she was asking me what my story was about.  And how am I supposed to answer that?  I mean, of course, I know what my story is about.  I’m nearly forty thousand words into it, so I should hope I have at least a general direction to go in.  But as some of you can probably relate to, I hate telling anybody about it.  Especially to people who I’m afraid might judge me for writing fantasy, but really, to anybody in general.  Even family.  Ugh, no, especially family.

After those first few seconds, I realized she wasn’t actually asking that.  I’m not sure exactly what she was asking, but I said, “It’s fiction.  For myself.”  That seemed to satisfy her, but then she goes and makes the next mistake by jokingly suggesting that I should “include” her into the story.

Um…okay.  I don’t even know what your name is.  I doubt you even remember who I am, really, aside from the daughter of a fellow homeschooler.  And you’re asking me to make a character out of you?  Fine.  I’ll make you into one of those characters you only see once, because they end up dead after that or something.  The lady with the sunglasses and the really sugary voice that was talking to you about how expensive ice-cream is and then wound up dead for being associated with you because there’s a really evil villain in this story.  Or something.

So then our other friend gets to the park, the one we were originally going to meet, and the first thing she says when she sees me is, “Homework, still?”

Gosh.  Does anybody write things anymore that aren’t for school?  I told this lady pretty much the same thing: “No, it’s fictional stuff for myself.  I finished school early, actually.”  Thankfully, she left it at that and didn’t say anything more.  That might have been because then she was saying hello to my mother, but still.

And that is one of the many reasons I don’t like writing where there are other human beings. Non-writers can be so ignorant sometimes… it’s not their fault, but it can be slightly annoying.  The other big reason is mostly that it’s hard to concentrate on writing something when my siblings are coming up to me and asking pointless questions like, “What should I eat for lunch?”

“Um…whatever you like to eat?  I don’t know, I’m writing, go away.”

So that was my day.  Anybody else have some, ahem, fun with writing lately?

On a slightly different note, I made up my mind about what I was talking about in my last post.  I’m going to keep writing on the current project, at least for a little longer.  Mostly, that decision was made by the inspiration for the other story coming to a total and abrupt halt (though I did get about a thousand words out of it beforehand), but also that I looked at my bar on the side for how many days I’d been writing in a row on that one story.  At the time, I think it was about 21 days (though you can see now that it’s 25, as of this very moment).  That’s awfully close to thirty.  So, what I’m going to do is make it to that bloody thirty.  Then, if I still want to switch, I’ll switch.   But I’m going to make a full month before I stop.

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25 thoughts on “The Horrors of Non-Writers & Writing in Public (Plus a Resolution to the Last Post)

  1. So I’m going to make some assumptions here, and since I’ve just started following your blog recently I don’t know your whole story, so here goes. I’m assuming you’re still in high school (home schooled). My advice to any writer is to wear that mantle and wear it proud, but I can understand if you are young how hard that can be. When I first started telling people I was writing a book, I thought it would be motivation to actually finish it. You know, if they ask me about it later I want to have something to tell them. While this did work, it got to the point where I was tired of fielding pointless questions about my “hobby”. I decided to be a writer. Unpublished. No awards. Nothing to show but two complete manuscripts. But I AM a WRITER. Telling people that still gets me questions, but they are more professional and serious, because I take myself professional and serious. You have written almost 50,000 words. That is amazing!! There are plenty of adults who give up before that point. Maybe you’re not ready to wear the writer mantle for the whole world to see, and that’s okay. but know that a day will come when you can and will wear it. And yes, non-writers can be pretty clueless! 🙂 But we just have to grin and bear it. But like I said, when I started taking myself seriously, people’s responses changed. They wanted to know the details of how to get published, what I was writing, etc. So good luck with all those non-writers. I wish they would just let us write!

    1. Yeah, I’m still in highschool. Normally, I don’t have any problem sharing that I’m a writer, I guess I’m just afraid of those questions. “What is your story about?” always seems to be the first question to be asked, and I’m afraid of answering it. Mostly, I suppose, because I’m afraid of being judged or of people not liking my idea—or, worse, of the words coming out wrong and making both me and my story sound ridiculous. Even if, while I’m writing it, I think it’s awesome.

      I guess I do need to learn to get over that, especially if I continue to contemplate the idea of publishing one day. But, thank you for your advice. Hopefully I’ll get better at this. 🙂

      1. I’m terrible at talking to people about something I care about! I’ve prepared a little speech that usually addresses what my books about without going into too much detail. That way, when I talk about it I’m prepared. Plus, if you ever have an opportunity to verbally pitch your book you can do so without sounding like a bumbling idiot. 🙂 That’s generally what I sound like. Good luck to you and your book!

  2. Oh, I could say I feel the same. I don’t write so often, but whenever I do, humans come and ask what I am writing about. I usually tell them “a story,” or “I don’t know” or go into an elaborate explanation either because I am exited or because I want to scare them off.
    I’m glad that you stick to writing for so long. I usually can’t do that.
    I often feel like saying:
    Person: “What are you writing”
    Me: “a story”

    The same way I tell someone when I eat an interesting food:
    Person: “What are you eating?”
    Me: “Food. (My gosh, what else?)

    Even with little toddlers, I think that writing is a nice way to keep yourself happy, and always have your thoughts with you. 🙂

    1. Really? I love writing, so it’s what I do the most. I even write more than I draw. As you can probably tell by my lack of posts on my drawing blog… oops. *should probably fix that soon*

      My most common response is just, “a story” or I tell them about the story I know the least about, so that I can say, “I don’t really know yet”. *hehe, guilty grin*

      Hehe, I do the same thing when someone asks me what I’m eating. I often get annoyed looks from it, but… eh. *shrugs*

      1. Ah, both arts are so beautiful though. If you do one more than the other, that’s not problem. I’ve also neglected my other blog. oops.
        I enjoy writing, but it’s not something I really push myself to do as much as drawing.
        It’s hard to tell people that it’s a story, or a rambling poem, or stuff. I often feel they won’t accept it as writing. I mean, Harry Potter probably sounded crazy before it was published.
        I do the guilty grin. 🙂
        Even different looking food is food. Because that is what we eat. 😛

        1. Yes, absolutely. 😀

          Yeah, that’s how I am with my drawing. I do it only when I’m inspired, but I do my writing all the time, inspired or no.

          That’s very true… Most books probably sound strange when they’re first pitched, I’m sure.

          😀

          Exactly! 😀

  3. Peace

    Gah, I hate when that happens. And the questions are so vague…once, an adult asked me what my latest story was about and I was so busy thinking about my day that I thought he was talking about my life story…or something…that was embarrassing.

    But anyway, I hope you reach 40,000 words before the month is up. 😀 Good luck writing! *would like to write as much too* *except I accidentally left my character sheet things at home so I can only get them at the very end of summer, which means no writing at all for me*

        1. 😀

          I’m almost there! I think I get to 40k by tomorrow! Outlining can sometimes be good… I was just helping Kiwi out some with outlining. At least, trying to help. She says it was really helpful, but I think I forgot half of everything. >_<

  4. I can definitely sympathize with you. I don’t even tell my parents what I’m writing because neither of them are writers or readers, and they aren’t really interested in any of the genres I write. I prefer to just keep my writing to myself and my writer friends. That way I don’t have random people constantly asking what my story is about. Gah, that irritates me to no end.

    1. Yeah? My parents like reading, but neither of them really seem to have much interest in it. My mom knows very little about my stories (usually, the only time I really tell her anything is when I need to brainstorm at someone and my writer friends aren’t currently available), and my dad just… I don’t think he knows anything about my stories whatsoever.

      It’s so much easier to only talk to other writers about writing…

  5. I tend to get really positive responses when I mention I write, personally. Of course, all the “how’s it going?” questions start to grate when they come in the middle of a progress slump, but I guess I shouldn’t complain 😛

    Congrats on making it past 30 days, by the way 😀

    1. I don’t think I’ve ever gotten any negative responses, per se, but I get more of the “what’s it about?” questions more than positive ones, really. I think the best response I ever got was something along the lines of, “You do?”

      Thanks! 😀

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