i’m a writer…?

In my new job, I’m surrounded by young visual artists, many of whom are working on their writing. At a staff meeting last week, we were asked to consider the concept of ’the writer’. What does a writer look like? Where are they, and who is around them? Next, we were asked to recall the last time we wrote, and visualize that scene – where we were, who we were with, the sounds around us, etc.

The exercise was telling; for most of us, the scenes of ‘a writer’ and ‘ourselves writing’ were quite different. One woman pictured a Stephen King-type character, drafting a bestseller on a typewriter in an old study filled with mahogany furniture and leather-bound books.

My concept of the writer was more bohemian; philosophers in Parisian cafes recording their observations on human nature, art, and politics. Though this image morphed into a modern-day version of me, it still didn’t match where I actually last wrote: my previous job, a place I was unhappy in, drafting a blog post on my work email between meetings and daily duties.

Writing got me through the day.

a collage

As I shared in my last post, I left that job a few weeks ago, largely because I had little creative juice left at the end of the day to pursue my other loves – those endeavours known and unknown, longing to be explored.

My new position doesn’t require much writing, but I’m surrounded by creative colleagues who are eager to learn more about my personal practice. And every time they express interest in my writing, I hesitate. I’m fascinated by this continual reluctance to see myself as one of these talented, artistic people!

Our meeting activity really illuminated how pervasive and insidious certain labels can be. But it also helped me realize that, when I’m composing a blog post, I am a writer. I’m choosing to write because I love to write. It doesn’t matter where I am, who I’m with, what I’m wearing. It doesn’t matter if I do it daily or how many words I type or who’s writing more or less. In that moment, I am a writer.

I could go further, but I discovered a post from my early blogging days that totally captures what I want to say. It’s a timeless reminder from 5-years-ago me to my present self (I love it when that happens!):

We are all creative.

No labels required.

15 thoughts on “i’m a writer…?

  1. Very inspiring post, thank you , and thank you for being you and a creative, excellent writer.

    I had a discussion today about: “Who we are, and who might know about it…” and in the essence it was about the insight, that the only person that is able to see and understand who, what, where and why (lol) we are and can embody is Source and our (higher) Self. On top of that it can all change, many times through our life…and some have even more talents /special gifts than only one , which has amongst some rather beautiful effects, also the potential to cause complications in life ( see here: http://www.ted.com/talks/emilie_wapnick_why_some_of_us_don_t_have_one_true_calling) . This is the reason why I think that your other post (https://alohaleya.com/2013/05/12/we-are-all-creative/ ) is pretty awesome and helpful, because you are pointing out there very similar aspects of creativity….(You are also a pretty good photographer by the way 😀 )
    Many blessings ,
    Andreas

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks so much Andreas! I look forward to checking out the TED talk! For a long time I wished I was one of those people that had an obvious gift, and undeniable passion…but I realize that some of us may have multiple talents and gifts and the fun is in exploring those things. 🙂 I enjoyed writing both these posts, particularly the earlier one, so I was happy to rediscover it. 🙂 Namaste, Aleya

      Liked by 1 person

  2. yes We are! Once I starting blogging, my confidence grew and quickly I shifted from friend of writers to a writer! As a social worker/therapist, writing notes and reports is a daily task, but to me that is not what I mean by writing. It is an artform, a soul activity.

    Congrats on your new adventure, love, Linda ❤

    Liked by 3 people

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