There are a lot of definitions for writer, and all are subjective. This is mine, and it doesn’t consider extraneous factors. If you work through this verbal math problem, in the end, you will know if you are a writer or not.
Mitch walks into the two-story Barnes and Noble Bookstore in Southlake, Texas. He is an avid reader and this store has an estimated half-million books. He is browsing for a new book – anything that strikes his fancy, but he wants to discover it himself, not take someone’s recommendation.
In the course of one hour (which is all the time Mitch can spend, though he wishes it were more), he will scan over thousands of books, but will look at 200 books. That is to say that he noticed the cover art, read the title and author’s name.
Of those 200 books Mitch noticed, about 20 were interesting enough that he picked them up and read the back cover, inner sleeve and maybe a random paragraph or two to check the prose.
Of those 20 books Mitch picked up and read, about 2 were really interesting to him and are books he would like to read.
Of those two books Mitch would like to read, he will possibly buy one of them, moving it to the bottom of his reading list, at least ten books deep already. Mitch is reading these books as he has the time to do so.
If you followed the breakdown of 500,000 to 200 to 20 to 2 to ~1, and you understand the odds of having your book read by someone who has never read your work before, but continue to write, then you are a writer.
© 2012, Mitch Lavender