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Write On! November 15, 2010

Posted by nrhatch in Happiness, People, Writing & Writers.

BrownEyedMystic is guest-blogging today on {Courage 2 Create}, while Ollin steps in for BrownEyedMystic on her blog, Of Parchments & Inks.

BrownEyed’s post addresses writers, writing, and how to respond to the inevitable cocktail party inquiry . . . “I’m Sorry, What Do You Do, Again?”

Her post got me thinking.

When people ask  what “we do,”  they’re quite often asking (politely, in a socially acceptable way):



Writers who earn money from their writing are proud to declare, “I’m a writer,” because they know the next questions will be:


Writers who are not yet earning money from writing may be  reluctant to “open the door” to those follow up questions, knowing that many in society judge us not by the content of our character . . . but by the content of our wallets.

I don’t mind saying “I’m a writer,” because I don’t measure my worth as a writer (or as a human being) solely by my capacity to earn money.  If I did, I would still be practicing law.

For now, the journey of writing is enough for me.

If my decision to write (for the sheer pleasure of playing with words) is not enough for “them,” I don’t view that as my problem.

Mickey-SurferWhen we give ourselves the FREEDOM to pursue our purpose with passion, and our passion with purpose, who knows where the journey will lead as the path unfolds before us?

Write on!!!

Aah . . . that’s better!


1. Barbara Gunn - November 15, 2010

Right write on!!

nrhatch - November 15, 2010

What’s in your wallet? 😉

2. Maggie - November 15, 2010

I hate that “have you been published?” question. I don’t care if I never get published; it’s the joy of writing that keeps me going.

nrhatch - November 15, 2010

After J.K.Rowling became an international bestselling author she mused that, if she had it to do over again, she might have preferred remaining an unpublished author living in obscurity.

I love my anonymity. Fame holds no appeal for me. Neither does earning a Fortune.

I would love to earn “just enough” from my writing to “make ends meet.”

Rev. Caritas - November 19, 2010

I’m the same. Just enough to make ends meet, with those random spending sprees (okay, one extra box of cookies at the store, lol) being part of those “ends.”

Naturally, I am still wondering how to do that. If you ever figure it out, lemme know!

3. Paula Tohline Calhoun - November 15, 2010

Ah! “Just enough!” You saw me smiling when you wrote that, huh, Nancy!? Did you know that the opposite of both wealth and poverty is the same thing? Their opposite is “enough.”

When I ask someone what it is they do, you are right in assuming about the “making money angle,” except that assumption comes from the “askee” most times, and not this “asker.” I’m generally curious about what people do with their time, and not what their time yields them financially! My embarrassment in being asked that question used to come with my honest answer of “I don’t do much of anything!” Most especially since I started blogging, I have come to see the personal value in observing life and thinking about the world in which I live, and then taking the sometimes bold step of writing and sharing what it is I have observed and thought! I know that my own life has been enriched by reading such observations and thoughts from others, and I am encouraged by knowing that my own writing, while it may at times add to the junk on line, it might occasionally shed a little light as well!

Besides which, money and value are words that are just as susceptible to hermeneutics as any and all the others! It/they will mean to you exactly what you have decided the value will be!

nrhatch - November 15, 2010

I did write “just enough” with you in mind!

Your comment highlights one of the reasons WHY I am willing to answer the question What do you do?” by responding “I write.”

I like to see who gets caught up in WHAT I write about . . . vs. those who just want to know whether I make any money at it.

That fact, standing alone, gives me tremendous insight into the depth of THEIR character. 🙂

4. souldipper - November 15, 2010

I write! Wonder what makes people believe I owe them an explanation.

nrhatch - November 15, 2010

That’s the SPIRIT!!! 🙂

Paula Tohline Calhoun - November 16, 2010

So true, Souldipper, but on the other hand, what makes people believe ANY of the crazy stuff they believe! They need to start believing in what I believe in! The world would be so much happier! 😀 (I added the smiley so that those same people – definitely not you or me – will know I am joking. I mean – seriously! :-D) (I added that smiley so that. . .:-D) (And that smiley because. . .) ENOUGH!

nrhatch - November 16, 2010

Bwahaha! 😉

Rev. Caritas - November 19, 2010

Same here! I can’t tell if it’s innocent curiosity or ego, honestly. Maybe a mix of both?

5. Patricia - November 15, 2010

I never liked that question and now I answer “I enjoy my days”. Which is pretty much what I do though there are the rare blah/ugh days.

nrhatch - November 15, 2010

Love it!

Both that you are enjoying yourself, and that you offer that in response to the “what do you do?” inquiry.

6. Joanne - November 15, 2010

I love how you rebel against “status quo” —
because I’m on the same page as you are…
Writer, Singer, songwriter, teacher… our gifts are our birthrights — with or without the copyrights…!

nrhatch - November 15, 2010

Excellent point, Joanne.

It’s not the copyright (or the commission check) that determines the worth of our work.

7. Cindy - November 15, 2010

I can relate, thanks for posting this.

nrhatch - November 15, 2010

Thanks for linking this up.

At least your blogging efforts are keeping your wine cellar stocked! 😉

8. RAMBLING « The only Cin - November 15, 2010
nrhatch - November 15, 2010

I just reread your Rambling post and my comment. Maybe I am a “real writer” . . .

“Real writers are arrogant and pompous and egotistical and self-satisfied and never wracked with self-doubt. And they never engage in self deprecating humor.”

That’s me! 😉

9. Chad - November 16, 2010

Speaking of “gender specificity,”

the association of monetary worth with worth-as-a-person is much, much stronger with men than with women.

As a man, if you’re not pulling in the cash, you’re a… loser

nrhatch - November 16, 2010

That’s been my observation as well . . .

* It’s fine for women to stay home and raise a family while their husband “brings home the bacon,” but when the roles are reversed, people are less comfortable with the concept of a stay-at-home dad.

* It’s fine for a woman to be supported by a wealthy man by becoming a “trophy wife,” but we look askance at “boy toys” and “pool boys” whose sole support is wealthy women.

We don’t always view our roles in society from a gender neutral perspective.

10. Ollin - November 16, 2010

Thanks for mentioning me and BrownEyed! WRITE ON!!!

nrhatch - November 16, 2010

Very exciting that your blog and her post got Freshly Pressed today!

Hope it brings you both a boatload of new fans.

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