I crochet. I love it. Someone asked me recently why I do it.
“I need a hobby,” I responded.
“I thought writing was your hobby,” he said.
As an unpublished (for the most part) writer, that stings. Even if I could point at a magazine and say “Look what I did”, the attitude doesn’t change. And it probably won’t for most of us. Unless we reach John Grisham or J.K. Rowling like status, unless we can bring in the big bucks or win awards, some people will view our hard work and efforts as just a hobby.
It will always hurt. Most of us writers are used to it.
So if you are a friend or loved one of a writer, published or not, let me give you some advice. Writing is not a hobby. It is a definition of who we are. If we do not create, we are lying to ourselves. If we do not put pen to paper, fingers to keyboard, we are not living our lives to the fullest potential. If we do not write, we will not be happy.
The next time you meet someone and they tell you they are a writer, don’t ask them what they’ve published. Ask them what they write. And they’ll tell you everything you need to know about who they are.
It may surprise you.