There are many, many articles and books out there about writing. In fact, if you were to listen to all the ways you can do it wrong, you would never get started, because it can be really intimidating. I don’t care much about the rules. Writing at its core is much simpler than that: it’s the desire to put what’s in your head down on paper. No matter whether it’s “good” or “bad”, you are a writer when you do the following:
1. You constantly text yourself writing prompts, ideas, and a really good beginning for a new story.
2. You have 95 unfinished, half-finished or barley started articles in your drafts folder.
3. You wake up in the middle of the night with a new idea you have to write down right this minute before you forget.
4. You always have a notebook on your nightstand for that very purpose.
5. Few things excite you more than a fresh new notebook.
6. You can’t make sense of the thoughts in your head if you don’t write them down. It gets scary in there.
7. Writing is both the hardest and the best thing in your life.
8. You sometimes hate to write.
9. You always love having written.
10. You feel guilty on days when you don’t write.
11. You get the best ideas when you don’t have a chance to write them down.
12. You have always forgotten them by the time you sit down in front of your computer (see #3).
13. You equally admire and envy great writers.
14. There is a good chance that you have angrily yelled at the author of a particularly clever piece of writing, “how do you make it look so easy?!” (But only in your mind. You don’t know any great authors personally.)
15. You constantly doubt yourself and your writing.
16. You either have so many great ideas that you don’t know where to start, or none at all. There is no in-between.
17. You always have a voice in your head, narrating your life.
18. Every person you meet is a potential character for your next story.
19. You don’t think you’re a “real” writer.
20. But when you write, you are a writer.