when they find out

Not a huge number of people know that I’m a writer. I suppose the number is growing now, but it’s not something I tell the whole world. Although, haha, I suppose this blog could count as (potentially) the whole world. Anyway, in real life I sometimes have to be prodded by those who are “in the know” to tell those who aren’t.

But I’ve been (prodded into) telling other people about my book-news a LOT lately. Especially over the holidays.  The rainbow of reactions makes me laugh, and I thought I’d share some with you:

At a Christmas party with old family friends…

Friend: So what is the genre of this book?

Me: Young adult urban fantasy (side note: say that five times fast)

Friend: Urban fantasy? Not suburban fantasy? Or rural fantasy?

Hehe… I had never thought about that before, and I laughed pretty hard. The next scene takes place on the final day of my composition class. Our professor had prompted us to share what we had learned over the semester, and when it was my turn…

Me: I learned a lot blah blah blah and especially found this class helpful because I hope to make a career as a writer.

Professor: What do you want to write?

(And at this point in the conversation, there was no way out. My palms got a little sweaty)

Me: Well, actually, I have written a YA UF novel (say that five times — faster)

(I went on to explain the whole agent thing, and to my surprise…)


Apparently I am already a star. My favorite scene, though, needs a little back story. I sprained my ankle in November (I may be a star writer, but I’m not a star rock climber), so I couldn’t play in my badminton class for a few weeks. I would bring my computer and prop my leg up and work on all sorts of random things. One day…

Friend (who is in “the know”): (shouts across the whole gym) Kirsten, are you working on your book?

Badminton teacher: Your book?

Me: um… I wrote a book.

BT: You what?

Me: I wrote a book.

BT: A book?

Me: Yes, I wrote a book.

BT: You wrote a book?

So then, after he figured that whole thing out, we had to take a skills test. I was very rusty because of my ankle injury.

Me: (failing the skills test) I think I’m going to fail badminton.

BT: You’re not going to fail.

Me: But I FAILED this skills test!

BT: Okay. Calm down. You’re not going to fail. And you definitely won’t fail if you give me a copy of your book.

Me: Wait, what?

BT: You give me a copy of the book. I give you an A.

Well, he wasn’t quite serious. Oh well. It would have been a good exchange. More stories coming up sometime – in the mean time, share your own! How do people react upon hearing that you’re a writer?


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4 responses to “when they find out

  1. HAHAHA. Omg, I love you. And I love the idea of suburban fantasy… The only people I usually “tell” I’m writing a book are kids in my English class, when they’re desperate to know the origins of my 1337 writing skillz (not that I actually have any) after getting assignments back. Reactions range from blank stares to “OOOH can you edit my essay?”

  2. I’m an old doc. I write physician bluegrass fiction. I have found most folks don’t believe anyone they know in everyday life could be a real writer.

    They think it has to be “somebody out there.”

    It reminds me of the old question in the music biz: “Is that a real song or did you make that up?”

    Dr. B


  3. Haha, loved hearing about this! I stay open about telling people, but I try to share only as much as you’d share about anything; if the person is interested, and they prompt you, whatever.

    I usually get a lot of nice but misinformed reactions. Part of the problem is that when I say I write books, I don’t think they realize I mean bookstore books. So then I normally launch into this little speal about how a normal book is around this size (hand motions) and how those are usually 300 pages long, which is 75 – 80K, and how my current novel is 75K long, too. And then everyone seems to get it. The bad reactions come if I tell people I want to get published, lol.


  4. Hahaha, I love the stories. Especially the one with the badminton instructor.

    Reactions to my writing range from this: O.O you’re writing? what? really? omigosh how awesome!! to this: oh. well, that’s nice….

    Yeah. XD

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