I felt compelled to write this blog because of all the wonderful women of color I meet who write, but are afraid to call themselves a writer.
Who is a writer? Who decides what makes you a writer or not?
It’s pretty simple. If you write everyday (or almost everyday), you are a writer.
Stop letting other people’s narrow-minded definitions constrict you.
No, you don’t have to be published in a major publication to call yourself a writer.
No, you don’t have to have a degree in writing to call yourself a writer.
No, you don’t have to be a traditionally published author to call yourself a writer.
There are many types of writing out there: novels, articles, blogs, social media, poetry, insta-poetry, copy writing, grant writing, technical writing, digital content, infographics, business writing, medical writing, self-published books, ghostwriting, and the list goes on…
It doesn’t matter what type of writing you do. If you write, you should be proud to call yourself a writer.
This is 2018 and the definition for what constitutes a writer has changed a lot, especially due to technology.
Writing for Instagram doesn’t make you any less of a writer than a person writing for the New York Times, as long as you have quality content.
Self-publishing a book doesn’t make you any less of a writer than a person published through Harpercollins, as long as your writing is strong and you have had your work edited by a professional editor.
The industry was not made for us and it’s still extremely difficult for us to find our way in and be accepted. Which is why, going the traditional route is not the only way to do things anymore. For those of you who have found success going the traditional route, more power to you. Keep diversifying the industry from the inside. For the rest of us, keep writing, putting your writing out for the world to see by any means necessary (blogs, smaller publications, social media, self-publishing, etc.), and owning your title as a writer.
So, ladies, be proud of who you are. You are a writer. Own your skills. Own your narrative.
Now, go out there and make the world a better place with your talent.
Thank you for reading! Please feel free to share your perspectives on this topic in the comments below. I’d love to hear your experiences with identifying as a writer and a woman of color.
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If you are in the Atlanta area, catch me on the Atlanta Beltline from Aug 8-10th at 2pm at The Bakery Atlanta teaching character design and development for comics along with Prime Vice Studios. See ya’ll there! :)
Next Wednesday’s blog will be more #browngirlwrites stories.
Happy Writing! :)
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Art by Loso F. Perez of Prime Vice Studios
These blogs explore my writing process and highlight my favorite writers and books.