A few days ago I shared a story on Instagram about the time I moved to New York to pursue writing, yet told the cashier at Brooklyn Industries I was an Office Manager. My friend in the nicest way possible corrected me, "She's a WRITER" he interjected with a supportive yet stern smile on his face. I left the store feeling ashamed, yet absolutely loved.
Six years later and I still don't tell people I'm a writer. I didn't even share it as an interest with the men I didn't care about and would never see the two weeks I was on Hinge (more on that in another post). The fuck?
While not the most fulfilling answer, I never hesitate to tell people I'm an Executive Assistant. It's not a "hard" job, but not everyone can do it. Imagine being proud to tell people about a job that merely pays the bills, but being embarrassed to tell people about your passion. Maybe it's imposter syndrome. Maybe I feel dumb. Maybe I think it's like telling people I'm an aspiring a rapper. Maybe I'm an asshole.
There's nothing dumb about going hard for something that makes your heart beat as fast as a hummingbird's wings yet seems to slows down the rotation of the Earth at the same time. Something that starts wars and saves marriages. Something that helps and heals and hurts and connects. Something that makes you feel things.
So then why would I have the audacity to write a book? There's a part in the process of pitching a book where you have to state WHY. Why is your story special and why are you special enough to write it? I get stuck here all the time. The truth is I'm no more special than the next person in line at Starbucks or the DMV. I'm not a celebrity or a rocket scientist. I didn't have an interesting upbringing, I didn't invent anything or get abused or cheat death. My life has neither been surface level exceptional nor horrible. I had a normal life and experienced normal things - and I think THAT'S why it resonates with so many people.
The truth is not all of us will be famous or painstakingly rich, the President or the next Hollywood "it girl" and that's OK. But all of us can write a book. Or pursue that dream we had the audacity to come to fruition.