Thursday, April 5, 2007

Fraud

Charles recently blogged about the assumptions people make about writers. Though I could relate to all of the assumptions on his list, the one about writers being great party guests because of their witty repartee was one that really struck home. It happened again today.

I made a comment today (without thinking) about publishing in a room full of people and suddenly I was the center of attention. Not my favorite place to be. In the blink of an eye, I went from unassuming, middle-aged mom to an expert on writing, had lots of great stories to tell, knew every famous writer in the world personally, and must be working on a fabulous, famous series.

The fact that I ran screaming from the room didn't deter them. They followed me to the elevator, which was too darn slow in arriving for a quick getaway. I considered sprinting for the stairs and jumping over the railing, but the arthritis in my ankles was acting up. I was trapped. I spent the next few minutes stuck in a 4x4 cube explaining that I didn't know "so-and-so" and I don't know how to get started writing screenplays (Sidney, I gave them your dad's number if they have any more questions.)

To give these people credit, they were extremely nice and just excited for me, but I felt like a fraud. I managed to dodge a few questions that I didn't want to answer, yet the overall experience was very embarrassing. I'll have to watch what I say more carefully from now on.

At least, until I really do know "so and so", am raking in millions, have great connections and my series is an international best seller. Which should be, oh, any day now. :)

14 comments:

Charles Gramlich said...

LOL. Great story, Kate. At least after the fact. I certainly sympathize with your terror of the moment. But at least now you can laugh. If this ever happens to me can I tell them I know YOU? After all the fame comes your way, of course.

Steve Malley said...

Welcome back, Mighty K!

While it's lovely to have your comments, it's even better to have your posts!

Scenes like the one you described were why I gave up all human contact...

Kate S said...

By the way, Charles, I actually did say I know YOU. LOL Someone asked me if I knew a writer by the last name of Grimsley, but I said I did know of a Gramlich. :)

Thanks, Steve, that's very kind of you. I've tried for years to reduce human contact, but they find you. They always find you...

SQT said...

Well, I could wish I had this problem. Maybe I'll get something published someday. Until then, I'll really feel like a huge fraud.

Kate S said...

Nah, Sqt, until then, you're just a bohemian dreamer. ;)

Maybe we should make list of assumptions people make about unpublished writers. :)

Lucas Pederson said...

Everytime I mention I'm a writer people give me that "oh, well that's nice but don't quit your day job fella" smile and look.
Sooner or later I'll be published though. Then we'll see who laughs.

Kate S said...

I know what you mean, Lucas. I still get that if I mention writing (which I often don't, for that reason and the ones I posted here) but then I feel compelled to tell them I'm already published to wipe that condescending look off their faces, yet that starts the other firestorm. Can't win for losing. :)

I think I'll just stick with telling them what my day job is until further notice. :)

Sidney said...

They'll be asking you write things for them soon. You'd better start working on the reasons why you can't.

Kate S said...

Oh, that's okay, Sidney. I'm just going to refer them to you. :)

Stewart Sternberg said...

You know, the personae of WRITER can be used to one's advantage. I refer, of course, to when I was younger and actually got paid to write full time as a movie critic. It was easier to meet women as a WRITER than it was later as a TEACHER.

Alas. I used to say I wrote for a living and that anything else I did merely for money. How stupid. Now I see it differently. Now I serve my dogs for a living. That's one of my functions in life: to open the door, to close the door...to feed them. It makes life so much easier, don't you think?

avery said...

Poor Kate. But, at least you functioned. I can have a million thoughts fly from my fingers to my keyboard on a daily basis, but put a person in front of me who expects me to lead the conversation and I'll stare like a deer in headlights. I get brain freeze, and not even in the good, alcoholic drink sort of way.

Kate S said...

Stewart, you forgot about walking around behind them with a bag of poo. :)

Avery, who said I was functioning? lol

S* said...

"I considered sprinting for the stairs and jumping over the railing, but the arthritis in my ankles was acting up." Too funny!

I hate when people find out that I write and then all of a sudden they start talking about the great screenplay they're gonna write or the book about their life story that's going to be a best seller.

Kate S said...

S*, I guess every profession has something similar. I hear doctors say they're afraid to mention what they do because there'll be someone at every party who wants a free diagnosis.

Thanks for stopping by. :)