You know you’re a writer when…

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When people ask me about my career, I always say that I’m a writer. I mean, I write, and I get paid for it, so of course I’m a writer. Just not an award-winning novelist….yet, haha. Do you consider yourself a writer? Check out my list below.

You know you’re a writer when…

You look enviously at the New York Times bestsellers list and envision your name up there one day.

You eavesdrop on other people’s conversations when you’re looking for inspiration.

You know it must look overly pretentious sitting in a cafe, drinking a non-fat latte and typing away on your Macbook, but you still do it anyway.

At the top of your Christmas wish list every year is a typewriter.

Empty pages or a blank screen is your worst enemy.

You never leave the house without a notebook.

90% of all the presents you receive are notebooks.

You own a Moleskine.

You’re on a first name basis with the guys from your local bookshop/used book store.

Despite the popularity of e-readers, you refuse to ever stop buying actual paperbacks.

You have two favourite books – one that you tell your literary friends (“A Passage to India”) and one you tell all your other friends (“The Beach”).

You strongly believe in living the expat life because all the greatest writers do it.

When your parents ask why you need to move to [insert distant country here] to write your book, when you can simply write at home, you tell them that sacrifices need to be made for your art.

You believe everything happens for a reason.

You feel like how you met someone tells an important story about your relationship with them.

When you come across a quote you like, you save it with the intention of using it in your future book.

When you really like someone, you make a mental note to include them in the dedications page of your future book.

There’s at least one literary agent, whose blog you follow religiously.

Sometimes you’re not sure if you do things because you actually want to, or because it would make for a good story for your future book.

Sometimes your life feels so crazy, that your dreams seem more normal.

You say yes to almost everything, because the thought of saying no and missing out on an experience is a fate worst than death.

People have told you to stop being so dramatic.

The idea of being mediocre is probably the scariest thought ever.

You know that suburbia is the death of creativity.

People you know from ten years ago still message you, thinking that you’ve either become famous, married a Prince, or become a hippie drug dealer.

Sometimes you get a brilliant idea in your head while walking down the street and you can’t help but smile like a lunatic which scares everyone in your immediate surrounding.

You blame all your bad decisions and crazy actions on doing research for your future book.

Sometimes you feel like you’ll risk your well-being for a good story.

You’re constantly updating your author’s bio in your head.

When you tell people that you’re a writer, they look at you with sympathy.

You never stop thinking about this “future book.”

After experiencing an event so romantic/crazy/life-changing, one of the thoughts running through your head is, how are you going to top this moment with something better?

Sometimes when a moment is so perfect, you feel like the only way to capture it is to write it down.

You get your best ideas in the shower, before falling asleep, on the train or bus, and while jogging.

You’ve missed your bus/train stop because you were so full of thoughts.

You’re a sucker for inspirational advertising. Those Nike ads get to you all the time.

You go out seeking life changing events.

You haven’t even written your future book, and yet you’re already thinking about the movie adaptation.

You’re willing to scrap 100+ pages of writing if you’re not entirely happy with it.

When people ask you about your celebrity crush, you say Ernest Hemingway (oh and of course, Ewan McGregor).

Someone who insults your favourite writer is not a friend.

Ditto with people who have really poor grammar (unless English is their second language…then all of a sudden, it’s adorable).

Sometimes you watch a movie or read a book, and you seriously believe that it was made/written just for you (seriously my life is “Before Sunrise” on repeat).

You’re a sucker for the idea of fate.

Sometimes you wake up with the feeling that you’re just like [insert famous drugged up literary idol here], and it both excites and scares you simultaneously. Your friends just think you’re crazy.

You have a gut feeling that your future book is totally going to change the modern world.



  1. February 19, 2013 / 4:44 am

    Yes, I find myself nodding to most of the list. I must be a writer 😀
    The only ones I disagree with are the bit about the typewriter and not liking e-books. I used to be a skeptic, but I’ve now wholly embraced the electronic publishing revolution… the Kindle is a pretty amazing device you know.
    Incidentally, my last year was truly crazy and worthy of a novel… some crazy stuff happened to me and I went to Paris. I haven’t written it all up yet, since I’ve been lurching from one crazy event to another (check your e-mail to see what happened ). Sounds like you had some good adventures too!

  2. Michelle
    February 25, 2013 / 5:55 pm

    Yea, I’ve tried reading ebooks on tablets before, but I just never liked it as much as having a physical book! I can totally see why some people might like it though, especially travellers who need to pack light!

    And yea, would be cool to read about what happened to you in novel format. That’s pretty awesome! 🙂

  3. February 28, 2013 / 4:13 pm

    Though I’m not a writer, I enjoyed reading your list. I really love your style of writing, its very engaging.

  4. March 1, 2013 / 4:02 pm

    😀 Great list. I could cross off quite a few. The poor grammar thing is a bit different for me. English is my second language (actually if we go by the order I learned them in, my third after my native German and then Latin… does that count?) and I hate Germans who speak it badly. All the other accents are fine, but German accents and German grammar errors in English send cold shivers down my back. I’m a little arrogant that way. But I still hope English native speakers will forgive my own mistakes… Oh and poor grammar in German is an absolute no go.

    • Michelle
      March 7, 2013 / 1:00 pm

      Haha I love how you said the German accent sends cold shivers down your back! What a great line! 😀 I do know tons of people who cannot stand the German accent, but that is really funny! I have to say I don’t mind the German accent that much since I got used to it living here. My fav is definitely the Aussie accent!

  5. Justine
    April 17, 2013 / 12:08 pm

    I could see myself there on the list. XD

  6. Rene
    May 2, 2013 / 7:01 pm

    Sometimes I’m afraid that this list represents what a writer is not, but let’s hope it is right! I think and feel this way repeatedly.

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