Okay, so, those of you following my blog for a while know that I often draw advice from deep, inspiring movies like Clueless and She's All That and Mean Girls--cause, come on there's some incredible wisdom in there! *coughs*
No really--there is! And one of my particular favorites comes from the fabulous Damien in Mean Girls.
You remember the scene. Janis tells Cady (played by LiLo in her pre-trainwreck days) that she's a 'regulation hottie'. And when she questions it, Damien tells her to "Own it!"
I always think about that--especially when it comes to writing. Cause...well...confession: I haven't actually told very many people that I write.
And I know that may surprise some of you, given that I have this very public blog wherein I use my real name and talk all about, well, WRITING!
But funny thing: very few people I know actually read this blog. Most of them don't even know it exists. I told myself I wasn't telling people about it because I wanted to force myself to get real followers, rather than making everyone I'd worked with, gone to school with, talked to or anyone with a tiny blood connection click the 'follow' button.
But who am I kidding? It's mostly because it's SO awkward telling people I'm a writer. Because it always leads to THE QUESTION:
Where can I buy your book?
And it just feels so lame to say, "um...well...um... *shuffles feet*....you...can't."
Even adding, But I have an agent doesn't help. Cause, sadly--outside the writing world--that doesn't mean a whole lot. (NOT that having an agent somehow makes anyone MORE of a writer than someone unagented.)
People have NO idea how hard it is to get an agent. Or how hard it is to finish a stinking book in the first place. Or how frustrating it is to revise that book. Or the torture of writing a query letter--or the dreaded synopsis. Or how SLOW publishing is--so painfully, agonizingly slow that even when you get the book deal it's months or years before your book hits shelves.
So most of the time, when someone asks me what I do, I talk about the boring day job and leave out the whole writing thing. And if they do know I write, and ask me about it, I tend to give a vague, evasive answer and change the subject very quickly. I definitely don't, "Own it." And I thought I was playing it safer that way.
But I'm not sure I am. Because in some ways it feels like I have two lives. One online, where everyone knows about my dreams and progress and struggles. And one offline, where I smile and nod and avoid questions. And the deeper I delve into writing, the more hours I spend on writing/revising/blogging and NOT telling people about that, the more I'm distancing myself from everyone.
So I'm...torn. Should I take Damien's advice and 'Own it' and open myself up to all the fun questions and lack of understanding and frustration that can come with it? Or should I continue keeping it my dirty-little-secret, waiting until I have a book on the shelves before I 'out' myself from the Writer's Closet?
What do you guys think? I KNOW you must have opinions, because I know I've read similar posts to this one. So please--share. What do you do? Do you Own it? Why or why not?