Some of my best friends in the world are writers. In a strange way that makes sense to writers, I would never recognize them on the street, I wouldn’t know them if I bumped into them, I don’t even know their real names.
On the other hand, given a short piece of writing, I could recognize them from a mile away.
Writers understand writers in a way that other people can’t. By writers, I should clarify, I mean fiction writers, playwrights and poets. Every semi-educated person is a writer in the broadest sense. I mean writers who paint scenes and tell stories.
I’ve expressed a disinterest in feedback. I’m not encouraged by applause and I’m distracted by criticism. I don’t believe in mandatory laudatory payment for performance, nor do I have any use for a reader’s perspective on my work. But the commentary of another writer, a discussion of the writing issues or subject, these are completely fascinating to me.
The difference is subtle, yet huge. Only a writer can appreciate the task. Only a writer can bring something to the table, in a discussion of what’s been done, what might be done, what could be done. The perspective of a writer is a valid one. Nothing, other than writing another story, pleases me more.
I’m always in the market for a friend who understands. So comment away.