When is a writer not a writer?

As always, it’s so much easier to apply writing advice to people who aren’t yourself. The generally accepted wisdom is that a writer is always a writer even if they’re not actively, you know, writing.

As I’ve mentioned, I started a podcast last year. This month is its first anniversary and lately it seems I’m spending all my time on podcast-related projects. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I worked on a writing project (that wasn’t transcription, interview emails, scripts…)

And the strangest bit is, I don’t feel nearly as guilty about it as I assumed I would.

I suspect it’s a combination of things. First, the not inconsiderable setback of splitting from my agent last year and having had my favorite manuscript roundly rejected by every editor she and I could think of. Second, podcasting is turning out to be a) fun and b) leading to other fun projects. So I’m getting the gratifiation and fulfillment that, honestly, writing wasn’t giving me.

But that leaves me with a nagging question: am I still a writer? It would be strange not to be. I’ve wanted to be an author my entire life. But publication–traditional, at least–is very much outside the realm of possibility at the moment. So where does that leave me?

It’s also very strange to be here after a couple years where it seemed like everything was going right. I had an agent, won a writing award, and am on…three? committees in my writers’ organization.

In summary, I’m probably still a writer, just not one who’s writing very much at the moment.

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