Every so often, writers encounter those who are, simply put, snobs. You know the type. Writers who claim to not need outlines or notes. Writers who say they only write one draft. Writers who often reiterate how long they’ve been writing (I started writing as a hobby when I was 9 and decided I wanted to be a writer at 12, which is 16 years ago). Writers who don’t ever (ever) need betas. Writers who say that if you catch the affliction known as writer’s block, can’t concentrate on your work for whatever reason, procrastinate, or don’t write every day…
You’re Not a Real Writer.
Luckily, I went to a college rife with various arts majors, all of whom spent a lot of time sneering at one another, proclaiming that so-and-so is a “poser” and that dude isn’t “a real actor.” This kind of attitude isn’t new to me.
And even I’ll (happily) admit to a bit of writerly snobbery here and there and yes, I do (very) occasionally think, ‘Oh, dear God–he/she isn’t a Real Writer.”
And then I scratch my head and wonder, exactly, what a Real Writer is. Someone who sits and writes every single day? Someone who hits the Best Seller charts? Someone who never wrote a word in their lives and then decides to write a book? Someone who thinks up story idea after story idea? Someone who carefully edits and revises their work?
I don’t know if it’s as simple as “Writers write.” I think there are gradations on writing, like any art, and the arts are subjective. People write for different purposes and for different ends.
But don’t be a douche. Don’t dismiss a genre as trash because you’ve never tried reading it. Don’t dismiss a writer’s process because it doesn’t make sense to you. And don’t scare off the newbies; they might be our next literary giant.
Be careful, or you’ll end up in their novels.