I have the day off tomorrow. Hopefully some free time without hours of mind-numbing retail stuff to drain me first will help me be productive.
At work a coworker has a girlfriend who is (apparently) a budding writer. I told him to have her email me. This has turned into a big thing for her, apparently, with all kinds of concerns about meeting a stranger and stuff. I suspect the stuff part is having a potentially dispassionate reader tell her the truth about her work. We may have another potential INKer, or she may turn out to be a fanfic (Kami flinches from the many steely knives bared as fanfic writers prepare to defend their craft) writer who will appear briefly in my email box and then vanish cryptically in a puff of lavender smoke. I'll make first contact and see what's what.
This may be a case of her telling her boyfriend that she writes fantasy and he translated this to mean that she actually writes fantasy, if you know what I mean. That would explain the severe shyness.
So here's a word to those boyfriends (and girlfriends) out there who have been told that their person of interest is a writer. There are kinds of writers and writer wannabes and until you know what their type is, think twice before dragging them in the direction of things like critique groups, writer's conferences and such. It may be just what they want and need, or it might be the worst torture you could put them through.
And here's a word to the people out there who call themselves writers. Writer encompasses a huge group, from published authors to folks who like to hand write letters to their relatives, from up-and-coming writers of short stories to closet novelists that should stay in the closet, from poets of every skill level to non-fiction article writers, journalists, bloggers, and the small child who writes their very first essay without really understanding what an essay is. If you're going to tell someone you're a writer, it may be a good idea to go a little further and talk about what you write and why. It might save you some trouble. Then again, it might get you into the good kind of trouble.
I'll always wince when I mention I'm a writer and someone leaps in and asks what I've published. I've got to get quicker with the "and I hope to be published soon."
I've had a new one, btw. I mentioned I spent my evenings writing to one of my bosses and she asked what I wrote. "Fantasy novels," I said.
And her voice did that downturn. "Oh."
It's better than being asked what I've published, though!