Coming out of the writing closet – an act of arrogance?

7 thoughts on “Coming out of the writing closet – an act of arrogance?”

  1. This resonates perfectly! My writing group re-convened today after a long summer break and I was wondering why I was there when, to my relief, everyone confessed to the same fears. Our mentor is always telling us to describe ourselves as writers but that seems so pretentious. Your article is very encouraging. I’ll show it to the group next week, if you don’t mind.


  2. Thanks Anne and Maureen – at my workshop I introduced myself as ‘I’m Ali and I’m a writer’ – still felt like I was at AA, or in some kind of confessional – time to get over it I think!


  3. I even kept my writing a secret from my family for ages and even then it was ‘but you’re not to tell anyone’. I still feel a bit like it now, even though I’ve just got a publishing contract, I’ve only just told people I work with.


    1. Hi Sue, good to hear from you. My family eventually twigged but it was only after I won a (minor) writing Until then did they just assume I was no good!?
      I have also tried different ways of saying ‘I’m a writer’ to make it less arrogant e.g. ‘I do a bit of writing’ when people ask what I do now I have retired from the day job. ‘I’ve had a book published’ is now my favourite version, i.e. the achievement justifies the activity? Ali B.


  4. This really resonates with me, Ali – after three years of trying to fit too much into the day and nearly making myself ill through lack of sleep (think midnight oil plus an hour or two most nights), I gave up my day job at the start of this month so that I could concentrate on my writing full time. And now I find myself writing even longer hours, all day long, (because I can – hurrah!), but my mum (nearly 80) still doesn’t really take it seriously. She keeps thrusting books and DVDs on me because “now you’ve got all that lovely free time!” Er, actually, Mum, no. Still, I wouldn’t change it – or her – for a thing!


    1. Hi Debbie. I know what you mean but I am my own worst enemy. Even now when friends ask me what I’ve been up to lately I ‘m more likely to say ‘not much’ rather than ‘writing’ – or even ‘I’m a writer, what do you think’! Ali B


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