What makes a ‘real’ writer?

I have this old, vintage typewriter at home. It’s not my father’s—my sister has that one—and I can’t exactly remember how it came to be in my possession. It might have been something that Mister BS rescued from a garage sale for me. It’s turquoise. It doesn’t work. I love it.

I have to decide whether or not find a place for it in my Santa Barbara apartment.

The jury is still out.

One thing I know I’m not parting with: my Kate Spade typewriter bag.

It was an ill-advised, early morning purchase on my iPhone after a notice of a Kate Spade sale popped up in my inbox. I’d seen the style in person before—a number of YA authors own one, and I’d seen it at a conference. I’d lusted after it, but thought it was discontinued. The surprise sale notice rocked my world. I had to have it.

And now it is mine. I own a lot of purses, most of them ill-advised purchases. But purses are garments that hold their value and always fit. They’ve been my favorite for a while. I may wear cheap Old Navy jeans, but I carry high quality bags.

My typewriter bag makes an outfit. I can wear a simple black sheath dress, a cardigan, and flats, but not only can my bag carry several books and even my laptop—it makes a very basic outfit fun and personable.

I often question my identity as a writer. I have this blog, and my professional writing, and even my regular gig at Book Riot. But I still struggle to find time to devote to my fiction, and I may only ever write that for fun and the amusement of my critique partner and myself. 

I feel like a phony a lot of the time. Like, I’m not really even a real enough writer to legitimately carry this purse.

But I love this purse. And I love writing this blog as much as I love writing fiction—even if both are only for a very narrow audience.

I’m a writer.

Whether or not I own a typewriter, whether or not I carry this Kate Spade bag. All it takes is a dedication to writing. Every day. And that’s what I’m going to do.


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