List Lesson: 9 Questions to Annoy a Writer

As a writer, I’m desperate for attention. I think the proper term for this is “marketing,” but the less technical term is “LOOK AT ME!” In addition to (finally) making a Facebook page, one of the ways to garner myself some more attention is to blog more frequently. And a wonderful way to feel connected to other bloggers is to join in on WordPress’s Daily Posts Weekly Writing Challenge that is posted every Monday.

Now, I’m not saying I don’t have tons of ideas for things to write, but most of those ideas are for novel-length books, so you’re just going to have to wait for those words. The Weekly Challenge, however, throws an idea in my head and allows me to share some quick thoughts with you. Yay you!

This week’s challenge is to come up with a list. The Daily Post offers some great ideas, but the list that came into my mind was questions I hate being asked as a writer (and my snarky replies/explanations). So here we go….

  1. Have you found a publisher/agent yet? This question most often comes from my dad. Now my dad’s a bright guy, he should know damn well I would be calling every person I know if an agent wanted to represent me or a publisher wanted to offer me a book deal? This question is proof that there are stupid questions out there.
  2. What are you doing? This one typically comes from my mom who calls during the hours and days that are past of my work week. I’m not quite sure what she thinks my answer is going to be. Does she think I’m lounging at home while Benedict Cumberbatch fetches me drinks? Maybe she does, because there’s always a tinge of disappointment/confusion when I answer, “Working.”
  3. How much money are you making from your books? This one comes from my financial adviser, so I guess it’s a fair question. Still, it’s not something I like to divulge even to him because I would hate to see the skeptical look on his face that would imply the next question was on the tip of his tongue….
  4. Have you thought about getting a real job? I take my writing work very seriously and do treat it as a full time job during the week as well as working a bit on the weekends. I have a real job. Do I think about finding a job that pays better? Yes. But then I think about having to be on someone else’s schedule, putting up with office politics, and the misery of commuting. I’ll stick to the tiny paychecks for now.
  5. How’s the writing going? I’d like to think this is a question being asked so the asker could hear about what I’m working on and what I have planned, but I’ve learned it’s just code for the previous two questions. I’ve refined my answer for this one to “Good.”
  6. Want to go to lunch/coffee/shopping? Well, actually I’d love to, but with a to-do list that overflows the space allotted in my day planner, I don’t have an hour to linger over a sandwich or a cup of joe. I do appreciate being asked, but don’t be annoyed when I say I’m too busy to go. And don’t respond with…
  7. Busy with what? It takes a great deal of restraint not to slap the person who asks me this question. With three blogs to continually update, a book launch to plan, another book being written, other books to promote, attention to grab, and a home to maintain, trust me, I’m busy.
  8. Are you having a launch party for your book release? This comes from my husband. I know the only reason he’s asking is because he wants to have a party so we’ll order the croissant sandwiches he likes.
  9. And the worst question…Possibly the worst question is none at all. No questions about my career means you think writing is easy or that I sit around all day doing nothing except eating bonbons and watching my stories.

So go ahead, ask me about my books, ask me what I’ve been writing, ask me about my blogs, ask me about my hopes and fears as a writer, ask me to explain the work that goes into formatting a book.

Just don’t ask me questions that belittle my writing efforts….you’ve been duly warned.

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