It's hard for some people to believe that being a writer is an actual career path that one can take (and earn money with) after college. Whether you're a full-time freelancer, budding novelist, aspiring journalist, or just writing a blog as a side project, you've probably had to explain your job to friends and family a couple dozen times.
In the beginning, you're likely constantly getting questions like, "What's your real job?" and "Have you ever thought about becoming a teacher?" But after the bylines start to add up and your portfolio grows, the people close to you finally start understand what it is that you do all day.
Being a writer goes so far beyond typing away on your laptop in a coffee shop on Sunday afternoons. Writers have unique characteristics and ways of thinking about the world around them. There are some things about this that friends will totally understand, and there are other things they might never grasp — just like you might never understand everything about your investment banker friend's career. And that's the beauty of friendships, really — everyone contributes something different. Here are six things that happen when you're the "writer" of your friend group:
You constantly hear about how "fun" your job must be
It is pretty freaking cool that we get to use our (most often Liberal Arts) degrees to do something we love, but that doesn't mean that what we're doing doesn't still have the same kind of stress and pressure from a job in any other field. Just like everyone else, there are some days we just don't want to "go to work."
You get tired of hearing "You can't come out because you have a deadline? Can't just you just ask for an extension?"
Just like getting off on the right foot with your new boss, establishing a good relationship with our editors is essential for new writers. Of course we could ask for an extension (we all have, multiple times), but we know we shouldn't. Writers don't need the extra temptation.
You're the go-to for help with all of the grad school applications, cover letters, and résumés
I've even gotten notes from my dad asking if I could proofread a business one of his business emails before he sends it out. Don't be afraid to ask us to do this for you — so many writers are grammar geeks and and we love the chance to help you while correcting em dashes.
They know that sometimes you just have to be alone for a while
Whether we're working on a new story or just want time to be alone and think about our next idea, our friends know that we occasionally might disappear for a day. Or a few days. Or a week. We know they'll always check in to make sure we're alive, though, and we love them for that.
You know that even if your article doesn't go viral or you end up posting a short story to your blog because it was rejected everywhere else, they'll still read it
We recognize how cool it is to have a predetermined group of fans. Getting thoughtful emails, texts, Facebook comments, and retweets on a piece of writing that we worked hard on is one of the best feelings in the world, and we appreciate every bit of it. It's what keeps us going, really.
You've written Tinder and OkCupid profiles for people other than yourself
For some people, the worst part of online dating is getting everything set up. My friends have said things like "I can't think of anything clever to put in my bio," or "What's something smart and witty I can put in the 'You should contact me if...' section. We thrive off of these writing challenges, and we'll write a 150 character bio that will get you so many right swipes.
You've become an interpreter for cryptic emails and texts
All those years of critical thinking in college have trained us to read between the lines. For our friends, this means we'll always be there to de-code everything from the-day-after-first-date text messages, to passive aggressive emails from roommates, to Craigslist Missed Connections.
You're often asked for book recommendations
Being a writer also means being a reader, and we're the first ones our friends ask when they're looking for new book recommendations. We love this. We will always make a curated list just for you. And we will always be excited to talk about the books once you're done with them.
Your friends know that you're reachable on Gchat pretty much any hour of the day
Need some advice at 2:30 in the morning? We're here for you, boo. If not, shoot us a text. Our phones will be right next to our beds just in case inspiration strikes during a dream.
Photos: Craig Blankenhorn/HBO, Giphy (9)