So, I started my MA two weeks ago.
It’s been… interesting. Mostly because I thought I was over my iron deficiency and stopped taking my tablets. Learned that lesson the hard way…
Anyway, the major feeling I’ve come away with over the past couple of weeks is Bloody Hell Am I Young.
Which I hate. I’ve always hated feeling young. I hate the way people treat you when they perceive you as young. I hate the increased possibility of condescension. I hate feeling left out because I don’t have any meaningful life experiences to talk about.
Of course, whenever I talk about work, it becomes obvious that I do have meaningful life experiences to talk about. I’m a mother-flipping author!
But I hate talking about my work.
I know, right? I’m an author who hates talking about being an author. WTF?
But… It kind of feels like a lie?
I mean, it’s not a lie. I am an author. But people kind of assume things about authors. About the level of success that a published author must have. Now, their assumptions are on them, not me, but it still feels misleading to say “I’m an author”.
Even though I am…
Or it feels like bragging. It feels like I’m saying it to impress them, rather than telling the truth. I’m sure there’s some gendered BS in there somewhere… (says the sociology student)
So instead of talking about my writing, or running a business, I instead sit in silence while others talk about their kids or living abroad.
Maybe I’ll mention something I did in high school or the fact that I play D&D, but that just makes me feel even younger…
But then the question becomes When will I be ready to call myself an author?
Once I’ve sold 5,000 books?
Once I have 500 fans on my email list?
How many Twitter/Tumblr/Facebook followers before I feel legit?
Maybe I won’t feel legit until some trad-pub gatekeeper is at my door.
Maybe I won’t until I can quit my hypothetical day-job (oh the joys of being a student).
Maybe I won’t until I’ve got a Bestseller title to my name.
But that’s all ridiculous.
I wrote and published a book.
That makes me an author.
Maybe it’s time to stop waiting for the next goalpost and accept the title.
Otherwise, when will I?