If You Write, You're a Writer - Own Your Title

Wednesday, April 05, 2023


Writers are generally shy and introverted people who enjoy the quiet moments in life when they can be still with their thoughts to observe, process, and create. 

We are not usually confident in ourselves or our work, so it’s no wonder that calling ourselves a writer isn’t easy. Trust me, I get it. I was one of those people who had been writing for a decade, almost every day, and still didn’t feel worthy of calling myself a writer. 

But the simple fact is; if you write, you’re a writer. Boom! I see you; because if you are reading this, you are a writer. I know why you follow WOW! It’s because you care about writing. You’re passionate about words and stories and truth on the page. So why aren’t you being true to yourself? 

I had written three manuscripts and entered countless writing competitions before I reluctantly owned my title. 

Yeah, you might have to push yourself. I’m sure it’s going to feel uncomfortable. But trust me, the sooner you start calling yourself a writer, the quicker it will feel right. You must talk yourself into what you know is your destiny. 

By implementing a positive mindset about where you are headed and simply acknowledging what you are already doing – writing, you will be able to own your title. 

And by the time you are ready to call yourself an author, if you’re anything like me, you’ll probably feel like a huge imposter again. But that’s okay. Good things never come easy. 

I changed my Insta-handle to @kellysgroi.author this year (after signing with an agent) even though I still have doubts about getting my manuscripts published, and still suffer from imposter syndrome, but I push through my doubts because I know how much I love writing and am determined to keep writing and pursuing my dreams. 

Here’s a reminder of the definition of author: 
Oxford noun – a writer of a book, article, or document. 

Interesting, right? 

Have you written a book, article, or document? 

You are a writer and also the author of that short story, blog post, or essay. 

Come to think of it, maybe I became an author way back when I got my first short story published in the Medium lit journal P.S. I Love You back in 2017! 

So next time you are considering whether you are ready to change your title, remind yourself of: 
How long you’ve been writing. 
How many works you’ve submitted or had published. 
The praise you’ve received. 
The connections you’ve made. 
How hard you’ve worked. 
The manuscript/s you’ve written. 
That author contract you’ve signed. 

What are you waiting for? 

In my humble opinion, it’s better to own your title sooner rather than later. You might be surprised how it makes you feel. Confident. Proud. Motivated. Empowered.


Kelly Sgroi is based in Melbourne, Australia. 
Now represented by Beyond Words Literary Agency, Kelly is thrilled to be out of the query trenches and looking forward to what comes next in her writing journey. She's also a content writer at Social Media Tribe and will forever be an enthusiastic member of the writing community. Some of her short works are published by WOW! Women on Writing, Dream Journal, The Endometriosis Foundation of America, Endometriosis Australia, and a few Medium publications. Her debut manuscript is a women’s fiction story about motherhood.


Angela Mackintosh said...

Inspirational post, Kelly!

I remember having a real hard time calling myself a "writer," and even to this day I tend to downplay my creative writing. I had no problem calling myself an "artist" because I'd studied art, owned an art gallery, sold paintings, and worked in graphic design. But writing wasn't something I went to school for. I finally owned it sometime during the early WOW years after writing numerous articles and interviews and selling work. Now I introduce myself to people as a writer and editor. That's it. The artist title dropped off a while ago.

I love your list of reminders. :)

Sue Bradford Edwards said...

Love this! So many of the new writers I've worked with have been so hesitant to call themselves writers or authors. For some it is because they also illustrate. In children's writing, they can claim author/illustrator.

I always encourage them to claim their art because so often it is the key to finding time and energy to commit to that art.

Me? I'd rather write than do many other things.

Kelly Sgroi said...

Thank you! I love your comment because you've hit the nail on the head! It's harder to own your title when you don't have a piece of paper supporting your qualification as a writer. But by the time we are ready to introduce ourselves as a writer, we well and truly have earned that title.

Yes, we must encourage everyone to claim their art. It's a game changer! Love your work!

Sue Bradford Edwards said...

Thank you!

Renee Roberson said...

Thanks for the reminder, Kelly! You know what's weird? I went to school for communications and have been writing professionally for more than 20 years. But I still get nervous about calling myself a writer because I haven't published a novel. What's up with that? I've written soooo many articles, have won awards for short stories, write all my podcast episodes, but I think because people always go to "have you published a book" first in conversation, that's why I'm hesitant. Writers in all forms!

Ann Kathryn Kelly said...

Amen, amen, amen, Kelly! Love your closing list. Since meeting you, I've seen how your hard work has paid off, with agent representation. So inspiring. Next stop on your train: published fiction author! Yes!

Kelly Sgroi said...

Sue 💗

Renee - I wonder if it's more a voice in our heads. You became a writer decades ago! 🤩

Ann - Thank you! A writing journey is long but mine has been amazing with so many great friends on the train with me! Published Fiction Author, here we come!

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