“Strangely enough, I’m a bit of a writer myself.”

The title above is one of my favorite lines in the movie Shakespeare in Love. 

It’s a scene where Shakespeare is chasing after Gwyneth Paltrow, (I don’t remember her name in the movie) so he jumps in a small boat and the guy rowing the boat recognizes him as the great playwright. So out of the blue the boat rower guy pulls a manuscript out of his butt (not his real butt, that would be gross) and says the above line as he tries to get Shakespeare to take a look at it (the manuscript, not his butt).

6cB3XdKDNz-10It seems like everyone one wants to be a writer. I don’t know why that is. I am not sure if I want to be one. I know I want to write. I like to write, to express on paper  with words (paper, lol), but I am not sure I want to be a “writer” or experience anything that might come with that. I am not sure, but I think that I don’t like writing knowing that I would have a reason to write other than I feel like doing it. I don’t want to have to write. Writers have to write. Sounds like work.

But what makes us think that we can be writers? I know I have posed this question before, but seriously, what in the world makes us think that we can? Even if we can what in the world makes you think you can be successful at it? Most people don’t like to think like this, but it is entirely possible that you sit down and write 70,000 words and nobody on the planet will want to read it. Not a single one. Many (most?) of you out there will write books that almost no one will want to read. That is a fact. I have written many things that no one wants to read. There is just no telling what people want to read. I don’t write with the idea of what people might want to read anyway. I don’t think that way. But many of you do. You are trying to write the next best seller and chances are when you are done no one will read it. There are millions of unread books out there. Many of you have books on Amazon and can’t get a dozen people to read them. Yes, yes I know, getting people to read your stuff is not just a function of how good it is and many other factors are involved (like advertising) but still, no one is reading it.

I used to think that in order for people to want to read something it needed to be well written, and it needed to be a good and an interesting story. Twilight and Fifty Shades cleared that up real quick. Lightning quick.

Still, even if it does or doesn’t take any real talent to win at writing, why do many people want to do it? Or even think they can? Do that many of us really have a story to tell? Are any of those stories original anymore?

I can understand people out there writing a journal for personal reasons, or writing to pass down family stories. But there are millions of people out there who actually think they can sit down and write a book, and that somebody might actually want to read it. If I were to make a guess I would guess that many of them actually can’t. It isn’t as easy as many wanna-be writers think it is. I understand why they think that though (aside from stupid 50 shades and Twilight).

People think “Well, those are just words, right? And I know words, right? I mean I can write sentences and stuff, so yeah, why not? If I were to pick up a book right now I would know every word in it so yeah, why not me?”. It almost makes a little sense. Until it doesn’t. Until you sit down at your computer and nothing happens. Oh yeah, you spurt out some words here and there for a bit. You’ll make sentences and paragraphs and then it hits you that you have no idea where you are going, or even how to get there if you did. Everybody can throw words together for a little while. But to write for any length of time and make it all good takes both hard work and talent. Writing isn’t easy. Writing well is even harder. If you try it enough, you might even realize that the only truly easy thing about writing is getting it all wrong.

You need to decide yourself if you can ever be a writer and plan accordingly. By that I don’t mean that you need to stop writing. Those two things are not the same. Write every day if it makes you happy. But don’t waste your time trying to be a writer when you have so many other things you can be doing. The decision is yours (before some of you cry babies comment and say I am telling people not to write). I’m just saying think about it before it consumes your life and you look back and wonder what you could have done with all that time you wasted writing. I think about it all the time.

We can’t all be writers. We shouldn’t all be writers. If everyone is writing, who is actually out there doing something worth writing about? Right?

P.S.  Having said all that, I hope you have an amazing writing day!! You didn’t think I was talking about you, did you? You go write.

9 thoughts on ““Strangely enough, I’m a bit of a writer myself.”

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  1. Great perspective. You have to write a book to learn how to write a book. I believed my first effort was a masterpiece. After all, I had written professionally for more than two decades (reports, affidavits, evaluations, etc.). I went to a writers conference and met with both an agent and a publisher, having submitted ahead of time the first thirty pages or whatever it was of said next best seller. My work was shredded by these pros but with constructive criticism that made me a better writer. Actually, the criticism made me go out and learn to be a better writer. Interestingly, not long thereafter, I stopped writing because I had other things to do, as you said in this blog. The reason I started again is written in my blog titled The Dickie Floyd Story (found at dickiefloydnovels.com). You might enjoy reading that. It tells how through tragedy I was compelled to finish the second book I had started, A Good Bunch of Men. It turns out I was very afraid to publish my work and may never have done so without these circumstances. To my surprise, the book has done very well, and now I’m hooked again, writing as much as I can with no end in sight.

    I tried to friend you on FB but I think you are either private or full. Feel free to do so from your end if you would like. I have enjoyed reading your work since I discovered you the other day on Adam’s page. The story of your father was touching.

    I’d love to know more about you, your career, etc.

    Be well,


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for stopping by and I appreciate you taking the time to read and comment. Having earned my writing bones writing the same thousands of reports, affidavits, and evaluations as you, I fell what you are saying. The trick lately of course is to write something without making is sound a like a police reports. I’ll get there someday I hope. I’ll check the FB thing. Often it won’t let friend if you have no friends in common. I followed one of your blogs when I found your name but I think it gave me an error message a few days ago when I tried the novels page. Will figure it out soon. Thrilled to find another retired cop here. Good luck on your blog and am looking forward to reading your work! – Robert

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I enjoy your sense of humor. But, what you’ve said is true, and I don’t know how I feel about it. I published a book that more than 12 people read. I worked really hard, I wanted it done, and add far as numbers and marketing goes its actually doing quite well.

    But, you’re right. Everyone wants to be a writer. But not everyone can do it. I don’t think success is determined by how many readers you have, unless of course, that’s your goal.

    Anyway, you’ve given me great food for thought. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey, thanks for stopping by and reading my post. I took a glance at your blog and am anxious to read it. Yes, I thought I would just write a bit about the idea of wanting to write, and the fact that so many people not only want to do it, but actually think that they can. I’ve always wondered about that in my own writing, of course. I think I can. I am not sure if I want to. But I could be totally wrong. It may be much harder work than I am willing to do. It is important that we take a good look at things that are going to take up so much of our daily lives. That is really all I am saying. Every person has his own writing journey to make, and I will follow yours with interest. Good luck in your writing, wherever it takes you, and I will check out your blog and your book! -Robert


  3. My current book isn’t making a tonne of money or anything, but there are still way more people reading it than I even expected in the first place. I never expect to have a best seller… I’m just happy that some people actually like and want to read my stuff…. and now I feel a bit more legit since my next book will be published through a publisher instead of self-published like my last one. So maybe, just maybe I actually CAN be the next JK Rowling LOL! 😂 but yes I do agree sooo may people nowadays seem to think they are just that good and that obviously others wpuld be interested. Most of us just eke out a small niche or following, or don’t make a dent at all… maybe it’s wishful thinking, maybe it’s naivete… but many would be writers will fail unfortunately… and they’ll either continue to write because they love it, or drop off when it becomes too hard or isn’t a quick track to fame and fortune like they expect. I think the me-centric values and the everybody is special ideal gets taken to heart too often these days, and that sets people up for disappointment more often than not.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Writing is both “easy” and “easy to do wrong”. But I think people misinterpret their role in the writing world and equate success with money. I think people that write for money are probably the unhappiest people in the world. Write because you want to write, not because you want to be a writer.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I loved everything you said here. There’s a lot of truth in it, especially the fact that the more you work hard at writing well, the more you realize how little you know. I’m going through that right now as I try to get my story ready for publishing. The editing process has been brutal.

    I don’t know why so many people want to be writers either. I see a lot of my friends going that route and all the disappointments they deal with. I’m at a point in my life when I have better things to do than sending out hundreds of MS to try to find an agent, and then try to get published. I’m going to take my little book, post it on Amazon, and be done with it. If people happen to enjoy reading it, that’ll be great. Expecting anything more than that seems like a pipe dream to me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think sometimes that wanting to write is just a subset of our need to express things. I remember reading long ago that the need to express was by far the greatest need we have. To let others know what is going on inside of us. And that we suffer when we are not able to do it in some way or another. That doesn’t mean specifically we should all write, but we should all find an outlet for what is inside of us. I personally think that writing is my favorite outlet. But that never means I will ever be any good at it, and, that shouldn’t be the important question anyway. If we want to write then we should write.


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