I am a Writer
Ever since I hit puberty and was gifted with a typewriter I have loved writing. My handwriting is lousy and my handwriting teacher had a perpetual look of dismay on her face. Having a typewriter allowed me to write way faster than I could long hand it and considerably more legibly. Freed from the looks of my teacher and the speed limitations of my hand, I was able to legibly write almost as fast as I could think.
I spent my 9th and 10th grade in a prison called boarding school. Located in nowhere Connecticut, I spent much of my free time hammering out love letters to girls who lived in places I was rarely allowed to visit. While I spewed out my adolescent longings in hopes my ministries would parlay into something more than longings, I can't say those letters yielded many tangible results aside from the joy of writing them.
I have written before that my best friend's father (Max Lerner) was a writer and one day I asked him how I would know if I were a writer. He told me the simple truth, "Writer's write." In that regard I am a writer. But it took me a long time to use that word to describe myself.
I eventually left that prep school and made my way through life. I've had times when I haven't written much, but for the most part I have been hammering away at typewriter and computer keys most of my life. Whenever a friend would call and ask me what I was doing I would say I was typing. In my mind, I had not sold a book or even wooed a woman to sufficient degree to earn the title of writer. My friend's dad had given me entry into calling myself a writer, but without greater levels of success I did not feel worthy.
I have never achieved the level of fame or fortune I had hoped for as a writer which to this day causes me some pain. But, I have achieved a consistency with my efforts. I've written school papers, love letters, a dissertation, books, articles and posts along with countless emails and notes to myself to remember this or not forget that. The success I have achieved is the success of continuing to do something I love regardless of external success. I am happy I found something I love and glad I have been able to continue to do it. Just because my efforts have not gotten me on the NY Times Best Seller List or the Tonight Show does not mean I have not been a successful writer. I am a writer because I write and I am proud of that.