Updated: Dec 10, 2020
By Will Eichler
For a very long time, I did not identify myself as a writer. Writing was a hobby, something I did for fun or when I needed to vent. I was a student, or I worked in the back at a department store or in a bakery. I was not a writer. Most days, I still don’t feel like one.
Now I’m a salesman for a marketing company, and I write and edit for Next Page Ink. I am being paid for my time here at Next Page, so I am technically a professional writer. But I have to say, most days I still do not feel like one. Most days, I wake up and do not feel like anything. I could argue that this is due to my depression or the general boredom that seems to be so prominent during this pandemic. But I’m not sure if it is either of those things (it’s probably both) or simply not being confident enough in my own abilities as a writer to definitively say that I am a writer one. Regardless, when asked, I will say that’s what I am.
As if repeating it may one day convince me.
A quote often attributed to Aristotle is, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” So, I suppose the thing I really need to do to be a writer is write. Most days, though, I struggle to do that. And my day job is not one that requires me to write outside of a few numbers on a clipboard. But when I take the time to work for Next Page, or bother to open up the word document of the book I started writing almost two years ago, I can manage to convince myself, for however long, that I am what I say I am, even if I do not always feel like I am.