Most everyone including the great Neil Gaiman failed to answer yes to most questions that Lisa posed as far as being a professional writer instead of a hobbyist, so I won't beat a dead, and in my opinion, done in very bad taste, horse. What I wanted to explore with this post is what it means to be a writer to me.
First off, who am I?
I'm Joe Hart. I've been writing since I was 9.
I write about scary things. Monsters. Ghosts. Murderers. Average people.
I'm self published, not sure if that will change or not.
People buy my books everyday. It appears that they read them and then (most of them) say nice things about them. I love this.
Each day I get up and write or re-write/edit something I wrote. I love this more.
I make words where there were none before.
I don't clock into a job that requires me to leave my house and my family. I used to, but not anymore.
Sometimes I work for lots of hours. Sometimes its only a few.
Sometimes people think I don't really work, or that writing isn't a job. That's fine.
Sometimes I'm inside at my computer writing when the people who don't think writing is a real job are out having fun, not working at their job. That's fine too.
Some people base whether they're a writer or not by if they get paid to do it. I get paid to do it, but some would dispute this. Some say that if you write, you're a writer. I would follow closer to this path than any other.
If you create words where there were none before, and they tell a story, you're a writer. No one should doubt themselves or try to take a quiz to see if they qualify for something they love to do. They should simply do it and then the next day, do it again.
To me that's what writing is. Writing.