It’s Written in the Streets

Are you suited to be a writer?

 Of course you are!  That’s the thing about this job, whatever you bring to the table, it can be used, explored, torn apart and bettered.

 For this post I asked myself that question even though I think it’s a little dangerous because it’s so wide open.  You could go in so many different directions with it.  There is what you perceive of yourself, what others think about you, and then the mish-mash area where it all collides leaving us either without any doubts or completely unsure.  For me, I see writers as being the most accepting of others but on the other hand, we know a villain when we see one.  Because we have to deal with our character’s personality types, shouldn’t we be the best at dealing with the good and the bad? 

 That led me to the answer of whether I’m suited to be a writer or not.  Yes.  I am.

 I am very…Cest la vie.  Meaning I can deal with just about anything happening.  This past December, I was walking the streets of Philadelphia on my way to dinner with family while it was cold, dark and damp out.  A car went gleaming past and ran right through a puddle close to the sidewalk I was on.  Yep, I got splashed with yucky, dirty street water.  In my hair, all over my outfit.  That was when I flipped the script from laid-back Cali girl and went crazy in the street, cursing and putting on a great show of supreme pissed-offed-ness.  Just kidding.  That’s not me.  (Although as a writer, I can appreciate someone who would react like that.)  I just laughed it off.  It really was kind of funny if you think about it. 

 I fall in love with everything but am keenly aware of what could hurt me.  Yes, I do mean everything.  I feel a connection to trees, my car whose name is Fancy, songs, struggling worms about to dry out if they don’t make it to the grass in time, rappers cursing out their demons.  If you have a heart, I feel you.  I love interactions most of all because they are my fuel for writing stories.  You can bet if I have met you even once, I’ll have pulled something from it and have held on to the moment.   

 Those two things are what suit me most as a writer.  What makes you great for this job?

32 thoughts on “It’s Written in the Streets

  1. Sensitivity. The ability to feel others, animals, & nature makes me good writing prospect. The lack of a word I can’t remember right now (senior blonde-itis) – perhaps discipline or dedication (?) is a deterrent! 🙂
    I admire both your sensitivity and your discipline – and your expressionism.

    1. Thank you for stopping by Mom! Being sensitive to your surroundings is huge. And it definitely helps to be disciplined! The good thing is that both those qualities can be cultivated if you just practice a bit. Love you.

  2. Interesting angle on being a writer. I’ve never thought of it that way.

    I have a postcard that has a quote that goes something like, “If you’re a writer (or If you want to be a writer), than write!”

    To me, that means that if you want to be a writer than just write! Your feelings, the picturesque landscape that’s in your mind or at that moment in time, all the thoughts that are running through your head, etc.

    I think anyone can be a writer. If you write, you’re a writer!

    I used to have anxiety when I had to write a paper for school or press release for work. Now that I’ve realized that I’m not such a bad writer after all (I don’t think I could write a novel or a TV/movie script), I have no problem writing. I thoroughly enjoy writing. My only problem is that I don’t take the time to do it.

    Not to diminish those that write for a living but if one of your passions is writing but you keep all your work to yourself, I feel you still are a writer. Then maybe one day, you may discover you have something that will inspire or influence someone else and share it with the world!

    Ok now the more I think about it, have I completely missed the point of this topic?

    1. Kathleen, all great points! I enjoy reading your blog because you have one of the most wonderful senses of humor I have ever heard. I know it translates straight into anything you write. What stirred a lot of this up was a workshop I attended yesterday about knowing yourself and therefore your “voice”. I think the better you know yourself, the better off you are as a writer no matter how private or public you take it. You got the point very well! Thank you for sharing!

  3. Carlene, as I was reading your blog (?) I was thinking how cute and funny you are, and how much like your mom you are, and then I read what your mom wrote and laughed again, because she just confirmed it! Of course, I’m sure your dad also worried about the worms drying out, but I’m not sure he would have admitted it – well, maybe later in life he would have….Right now I am fighting back some tears just imagining such a horrible end to a life. I better stick to crocheting and sewing….

    1. Thank you for coming today Aunt Terry. One of the last times Dad came to visit me he actually found a humming bird that had passed out on my back porch in Arizona. He came inside and told me to get some sugary water in a little spoon. We went back outside and I watched while he held the tiny thing and dripped the sugar water into the bird’s beak. It took a few minutes but the humming bird got its senses back and flew off. I also have a couple of his letters to me that show what a sensitive and thoughtful person he was, and from that, a lovely writer as well. So let’s smile at that. Love you. Oh, and we looked up what type of humming bird it was….a sweet little female Anna’s Hummingbird.

      1. I never knew your dad as anything but super sensitive. Almost to a fault with all the bad things that can and do happen daily. I wish I would have kept letters he wrote me after Kenny died. He was an artist with his words.

          1. I totally agree…..I loved getting his letters as a child….It was the one thing I rememeber looking forward to…..I love the way he would write…whomever was the recipient, i am sure, was always made to feel like the most important person in the world. I kept some of his emails and re read them from time to time and always think….wow. That was for me! LOL Love you guys.

  4. I’m really sorry that I missed out on the workshop yesterday. 🙁 It sounds like it was a lot of fun and educational.
    For me whether or not I feel suited to be a writer depends on the day. Some days the words pour out out and the sentences fall into place. Other days I struggle over every word and it feels like I need a sledgehammer to force the kinks out of my plot.
    I guess the thing that makes me best suited to be a writer is that I’m observant. No matter where I am, school, a restaurant, the mall, I am always watching and listening to how people interact.

    1. Hi Dana! My dad always told me, “Details, details, details!” You can’t have those unless you are observant. Maybe on those days when you feel the need for a sledgehammer, just get out of wherever you are and observe something different. But that is an excellent quality to have!

  5. I am preoccupied with control:)… Years ago I read Ibsen’s Hedda Gabler, and there’s a line, “I want to shape a human destiny”….and I think that is why I love to write, I can create people, and guide their journey. And I mean “guide” because once they get a mind of their own, they rule. The other reason is I am ham. I was an actress, a dancer, and am a PR maven. And yes, I think ego is part of writing, especially when you do share your writing and what others to experience what you’ve created. Cool post.

      1. Denny, I think I would pay to see you act, heart you sing and read anything you write! You are a ham for sure and it’s so warmly entertaining. And yes, I can see where that preoccupation with control can play very nicely for a writer!

  6. I had to give alot of thought to this. Your points of know you are a writer are very satisfying,but there’s some authors that don’t care for animals and other living things. They have another point of view on there hands. Different type of stories.
    I can’t really say I’m a writer but I can at the same time. When I write I have to be in the mood. I can’t just write and write if I have Nothing to say or I’m not in the person shoe. I also agree with you I love animals and care for everything that lives. I love to read and sense that I’m in the book. It’s like a movie in your head. Your seeing everything Said with every details.

    1. Hey sweetie, thank you for stopping by. Well, as your auntie, I have to say that you may not know you are a writer but I do! Not saying you have to feel like it all the time but you have such a beautiful unhindered attitude about it, you are just right the way you are.

  7. Knowing you Mermaid Carlene, I can’t imagine you reacting any differently to getting splashed. 🙂

    As for what makes me a good fit for being a writer. Thick skin. A sense of humor that’s a mix of a 12-year-old boy and dark sarcasm. My love of drinking. Ha. I’m kidding on that one. See what I mean? 12-year-old boy.

    1. Avery Mermaid,
      Dark sarcasm is one of my favorite things to read so I’m glad you’re full of it! I can’t wait to get through a couple more books on my ‘to read’ shelf so I can get your Up a Dry Creek! Thanks for chiming in!

  8. In many ways, I’m not “suited” to be a writer. I’m not observant; I don’t have a very thick skin; I’m not teeming with story ideas. But I’m suited in one very important way: I want to be a writer. And I will sacrifice a lot in order to be one. In the end, that’s what’s important, right?

    1. YES P.H.! My husband would call that “Fire & Desire.” And in my opinion, you can’t have that without having a huge heart. In turn, you will pour your heart into everything you write, giving it life. I can’t think of many things more important than that.

  9. Sensitive, disciplined, observant, expressive, thick-skinned, humorous, determined… one or all, I think this is a ruby of a list so far!

  10. Hmmm, I’m not quite sure why I’m suited to be a writer. I guess I’m sensitive and observant so that’s a good start. And I’m very empathetic. That goes for real people as well as the ones screaming in my head. Plus, I type fast. 😉

    Great post, Carlene-Mermaid!

    1. Kerri Mermaid yes…we almost forgot the typing aspect! And I’m glad you mentioned being empathetic too. I’m not sure exactly how to explain it, but my feeling is you have to really know yourself, your strengths and weaknesses before you can know someone else’s. (Yes, real and make believe.) Being empathetic has to be an important part of being a writer for that reason. Thanks for sharing!

  11. Carlene – your assessment of yourself is spot on. You are the most open soul I’ve ever met.

    For me – I think it’s my sense of humor and my absolute inability to let anything go. Stubborn – that’s me!

    1. Awww, thank you Robin! That means a lot to me.

      Having that ability to see humor and use it is underrated in my opinion. Sometimes, it’s absolutely what’s going to get a person through and if you can inject that into your writing, it’s just a very important part! So I’m glad to hear you are stubborn! It’s a good thing! Thank you!

  12. Imagination and curiosity. Those are my writing qualities. I am so curious, on the brink of nosey, about everyone that I meet or just see walking down the road. Tony and I sometimes sit on a bench at the mall and make up stories about passersby. And then after the curiosity about their lives comes the imagination of what they might have done or might be doing. It’s entertaining enough sometimes, that I go home and write it down. Love your blog Carlene. I am proud to call you my sister. 🙂

    1. Imagination. Thank you for adding that one, Dana Cherie (That way I can keep you straight from Dana Mermaid!) Only the root of every single thing we’ll write! I’d say you can learn most things about writing but you really need at least a slightly active imagination to start with.

      Thank you for sharing your lovely traits and for being you–my best baby sis.

      1. hahaha good thing you only have one baby sis…LOL I know it was pretty obvious to put imagination however a lot of people dont use theirs enough…..mine is overactive! LOL ( Tony also calls me Dana Cherie 😉 )

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