I am suffering from a major case of the Green-eyed Monster.
I’ve always called myself a writer, even when I wasn’t writing all that much. I figured that I thought like a writer, I read like a writer (not sure exactly what that is but moving on) so I was a writer, albeit a lapsed one.
I’m questioning myself now.
Last night, I read through two awesome pieces that are being workshopped in class tomorrow. Two classmates of mine who can really write. One in particular blew my mind. I mean, sure, there are problems and it’s only a first draft but damn, that man can write. And it’s reading those first drafts and comparing it to my first draft that the green-eyed monster comes out to play.
How can I call myself a writer when my writing cannot compare to this?
Reading this piece made me realise how stilted and wooden my writing is, how immature it is. I remember laughing quietly to myself years ago when I read a piece of writing at Tafe. I remember the guy who wrote it was 18 or 19 and I thought to myself ‘jeez, so immature‘ but now I’m that person. The lapsed-writer in me is stuck at who she was at 23 and boy, does it show.
Part of me is tempted to hang my head in shame and focus on the editing and publishing classes in my course and slowly, but surely, stop talking about writing and just enjoy reading. Don’t worry, it’s only part of me. The rest of me will beat that part into submission and I’ll work my ass off to get my writing up to scratch. I will put my head down and work on the craft instead of pretending to myself that I have some innate talent. The guy who wrote the piece I read last night? That’s innate talent but it’s probably come from damn hard work too. But that’s okay. There’s a place for both of us in the literary world.
My writing is more likely to be on the popular fiction shelf while his may end up winning awards. And that’s okay too. Gotta remember that!