What’s Your Story?

Recently I got an interesting email from Leslie Flinger, waxing poetically about the subject of… writing. It sparked an interesting discussion and I will let Leslie talk about it at length sometime since it was her topic – but what really happened for me was … introspection.

I was honored that she thought enough of me to ask my opinion – but am I really a Writer with a capital W?

When I think about great writers, I think of Kate Sweet Salty and Amy Chicken & Cheese. Not me. Not the one who curses a lot and then types up the little stories about her husband and son that tickle her funny bone.

I kind of sat back and decided I am a storyteller. That feels better to me when I roll it around my half empty brain. The words don’t swish back and forth delicately like they do for some people; I am too conversational. But I am comfortable, easy.

And I kind of like it that way.

Lately I have been a bit frustrated. Over too many trivial things, I admit, but frustrated nonetheless. I don’t understand people or how they operate. And when I get like this I try to look closer to home. To my family, my close friends, to myself.

And looking at my life through a magnifying glass filters out the weird stuff. Makes it easier to see the good things, the things that make me laugh, the things I *want* to write about.

The stories I want to tell.


What kind of writer are you?

This article has 21 comments

  1. Anonymous

    I like the way you write. Keep it coming. – m

  2. Meghann

    I guess I’m an anecdotal writer. I used to consider myself more as a writer with a capital W, especially when I was younger and had a lot of teachers tell me that I was talented. I used to be able to write on my blog too. Stories that even I knew were funny, or heart wrenching or what have you.

    The past year or so? My brain has gone in the toilet, and every time I go to blog I feel like a monkey with a typewriter. These days I’d call my writing “barely coherent ramblings”.

  3. Anonymous

    I don’t write ANYTHING. I just love reading and living vicariously through blogs.

  4. Creative Junkie

    Ummm … a casual one who makes up her own words, with no regard for either grammatical or punctuational correctness?

    When I write, I want it to “sound” the way I speak. I’m very informal and I find that if I concentrate too hard on the correct way of writing something, I’m that much less inspired to actually write it.

  5. Aimee Greeblemonkey

    Junkie – I am forever going back into posts and correcting spelling errors.

  6. Brigid

    I am a storyteller also. When people compliment my writing I have to pretend not to look shocked, becuase I would say the same thing to you if we were in a room together that I write about. No one ever says I’m a great talker. I think people relate to the fact that I write in a conversational tone. But now that I have found such a conversational voice, I’m not sure how to combine that with any more serious than blogging about the things that I find funny.

  7. Ms. Maxwell

    I write, therefore I am. Kind of a way I can crystallize what I’m thinking and feeling, because sometimes I’m not really sure until I capture it, edit it, and even sometimes publish it on my blog in writing. I’m not sure that makes me a writer, storyteller, anectodalist (maker-up of words!) or anything else. I just like having my blog with its audience of 4 (not counting my dad) for that unassuming purpose. And as unassuming goes, that is what I love the most about your blog and Writing style — genuine, clear, freakin’ hilarious, and engaging.

  8. Aimee Greeblemonkey

    Ms. M, I saw that capital W slip in there and I appreciate it. 🙂

    And Amy – you rule lady.

  9. carrie

    It depends…lately I’ve felt like a “verbal diarrhea” type of writer. Most of the time though, I would peg myself in the storytller category as well…just talking my head off to a bunch of friends!

  10. Mrs. Chicken

    First of all, I totally see you as a writer with a big W. You have a clarity in your prose that is refreshing and so easy and lovely to read.

    Second, you are too, too kind to single me out, and in the company of Kate, no less. I can die a happy woman now.

    Love you.


    I, too, think of myself as a storyteller and not a writer.

    I kind of look at it this way and I do not mean to cheapen either writing or storytellers but writers write from the brain and the soul. Sotrytellers write from the heart and the gut.

  12. sweetsalty kate

    I’ve never considered a distinction between storyteller and writer.. I feel like sometimes it works and clicks and is just planted upon us while the planets are aligned and the kids are quiet – and sometimes it doesn’t. Sometimes we all feel like ‘writers’ – and sometimes we all feel like frauds. I figure all you can do is just keep going, and resist donning one label or another based on the random granting of a day that is or is not cooperative with words.

    This was so sweet, anyway… so thank you. You are absolutely selling yourself short, but don’t we all? It’s human nature. Ahh, the fun and angst of being humanity.

  13. Aimee Greeblemonkey

    Kate has a great point about labels – I am an not a big fan of labels myself and certainly didn’t mean this post to be about labeling ourselves or painting ourselves into a corner. I guess I just started thinking about the different styles of writing that are out there, they are all valid and interesting and wondering what each of us do, how we do it, etc.

    Loving hearing your stories!

  14. Sizzle

    I don’t tend to think of myself as a writer but, like you, a storyteller. I actually think I might be better live on stage because of all the hand gestures and facial expressions. 😉

  15. Angela

    Totally with you on storyteller. I was with a bunch of Boston area bloggers and they all have some sort of English or journalism degree and consider themselves writers. I replied “I am so not a writer.” To which they probably looked at me thinking, what are you doing blogging then? I hide behind photographs and will write profusely now and again, but it’s all to tell an story or an anecdote that I want keep forever. That and the occasional rant ;).

  16. Vanity's Fare

    I’m the writer who just took an editing class and now want to take back every dumb thing I’ve put into the blogosphere.

    Some days it’s hard to own up and claim that the drivel is yours. Embarrassment almost drives me away, but then the desire to get it out overtakes the embarrassment.

  17. Kimberly

    I suck right now…but you? You rock.

  18. chloebear

    at least you have a voice that can come across on “paper” – I have so many things to say, but get held back because I think people will think it’s stupid. So I just read and listen and try to act like I fit in.

  19. Julie @ The Mom Slant

    I love the feeling of saying exactly what I set out to say. I get the sense from each one of your posts that you’ve done exactly that.

  20. sue

    Well, I’ve recently become a more secretive writer. lol

    Love the way YOU write… keep up the good work!

  21. Whit

    I would like to be a storyteller, but half the time I don’t have a story in mind. I just start writing and when I get to the end I stop. It’s iffy at best.

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