Sunday, July 18, 2010

A Real Writer?

Friday night I watched the movie "Julie and Julia". For those who remember Julia Child from tv way back when, Meryl Streep gave a dead-on portrayal of the famous chef. Amy Adams was fabulous, too, and both actresses were backed by a wonderful supporting cast.

However, I had one issue with the movie. Several times throughout, Julie declared she wouldn't be a 'real' writer until she had a book published.

I completely disagree with this mindset. Even before I got published, I wrote a lot. All the time. I considered myself a writer. Afterall, I was putting words down on paper...creating stories, plots, characters, etc. Doesn't that constitute being a writer? Even as a published author, I still write many things that won't ever get into print at any time or in any place. But I'm still writing them.

Of course the happy ending in the story came when, despite Julia's apparent disapproval of the entire project, Julie had her dream come true and published a book...which of course we know was then later made into a movie.

I still argue getting the book published didn't make Julie more of a writer than she'd been in the first place. But that's just my humble opinion.

So, what do you think? Do you have to be published in order to be considered a 'real' writer? Or is it perhaps society's dictates on definitions such as this that shape the way we view things?

Until next time,

Happy Reading!



Mary@GigglesandGuns said...

When I was a whole lot younger they used to speak/write of authors like this:
"He/she is an author/writer."
"He/she is a published author/writer."
I think those were a lot better than the way some try to differentiate now.
Giggles and Guns

Debra St. John said...

Hi Mary,

That does make it a bit more specific, doesn't it?

Morgan Mandel said...

I use writer to describe all of us who write. I use author to describe people who are published. I'm not sure if everyone does it that way or not.

Morgan Mandel

Anonymous said...

Totally agree with you! (About Julie--I was is in a mystery critique group with Julie's mother-in-law while Julie was blogging about her cooking through Julia's cookbook, and how excited they all were when the blog got noticed by an editor! Shows blogs work, huh?

Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

If you write you are a writer.