15 Reasons Not to Become a Writer (Or “Mamas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Ernest Hemingway”)

Today, I’m guest posting over at the The Master’s Artist with the tongue-in-cheek tutorial on why being a writer may not be the best life decision: “15 Reasons Not to Become a Writer (Or ‘Mamas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Ernest Hemingway’)”.

Excerpt: I suppose it’s possible that a few starry-eyed folks out there have yet to be awakened from the happy notion that writerdom is only a step down on the glam scale from actordom or pop-singerdom. So for the sake of any of you who are still nursing dreams of dashing off a few thousand words and promptly retiring to the easy life of contemplative bliss, double lattes, and large paychecks, I suppose it’s only the least I can do to point a few of the hard, but all too true, reasons why you should seriously consider abandoning these crazy ambitions to become a writer.

Keep reading!

15 Reasons Not to Become a Writer(Or (2)

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About K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland

K.M. Weiland is the award-winning and internationally-published author of the acclaimed writing guides Outlining Your Novel, Structuring Your Novel, and Creating Character Arcs. A native of western Nebraska, she writes historical and fantasy novels and mentors authors on her award-winning website Helping Writers Become Authors.


  1. Came here via MA, where I indulged in hearty laughter. Kudos for that! I may have to do some more reading here.

  2. Thanks for stopping by!

  3. I read your 15 reasons and enjoyed every minute of it. I left my comments there.

  4. Thanks, Shaddy my friend!

  5. Katie: You are now officially outed as a comedian. We who Giggle salute you! 😉

  6. Thanks. But I tell you what – being funny is no laughing matter! 😛

  7. Lol, that was so funny and sadly so true! I love number 7.

  8. Thanks. The funniest thing about it is that it’s 100% true!

  9. Should I be concerned if I exhibited #2 BEFORE I became a writer?

    LOL. Thanks, Katie for a solid laugh. Well-written and entertaining, especially for writers, who can relate to how true those warnings are…

  10. Oh, yes! Be concerned, be very concerned!

  11. I once had a next door neighbor knock on my door just as I was doing the dialogue to the big fight scene out loud. LOL He was taken aback to say the least. And looked a bit nervous.

  12. Were you choreographing it too? I swordfight with my letter opener. I can only imagine how amusing (read: crazy) it must look!

  13. LOL. So funny and so true.

    I get warning frowns from family when we sit down to watch a movie or TV. Heck, I can’t help it that I can see what is going to happen next nor can I help it if something lame happens.

    You made me laugh. Thank you. 🙂

  14. Loved it! And somewhat concerned that #9 may be occurring in my life.

    Have a great day.

  15. Enjoyed the article, Katie. (I prefer carboard tubes for choreographing sword fights—they have good heft and make cooler ‘whooshing’ sounds.)

  16. Katie, you’re hilarious. I have problems with my wrists and a sore backside after sitting so much so I can really identify with #10.

  17. @Rulan: Are you a credits enthusiast too? I get the dirty looks for my refusal to fast forward through the credits. Never know when you’re going to find a good character name!

    @Kelly: Don’t be too concerned. There are worse diets out there. At least, you’re getting your daily ration of comfort food!

    @Phy: Carboard tubes=whooshing noises. I’ll have to remember that. Probably don’t hurt as badly when you accidentally stab yourself either…

  18. @Sharon: That symptom really isn’t all that funny. I’m hoping and praying and doing my best to prevent carpal tunnel syndrome. The sore backside I’m not so worried about. 😉

  19. Thank you for stopping by my blog this week! I will check out your article now!

  20. My pleasure! I’ll definitely be back!

  21. Thanks for following my blog, hope you liked it. I like yours, it’s awesome to be a writer, isnt it?

  22. My pleasure. Your pictures are very nice!

  23. I wasn’t choreographing movements when my neighbor chanced by. I tend to imagine action scenes more for writing anyway. Especially since the last one I did involved two dragons fighting in mid-air. LOL However, I have choreographed fight scenes for the occasional community theatre show with my husband’s help. I wonder if anyone noticed those through any windows. LOL

  24. Yes, best to pull the blinds on those scenes – lest the neighbors end up calling the police!

  25. …please where can I buy a unicorn?

  26. At the local unicorn mart, of course.

  27. Maybe that’s why writing forums are being so successful these days. Weirdos tend to be comfortable near weirdos 😀
    As for me, I am perfectly fitted in every bit of your writers sketch( except I haven’t gotten much in the eavesdropping part )
    And one last thing, you didn’t succeeded in the reason you wrote the article in my case, I am not a least bit discouraged by the thought of being a weirdo (oops sorry, I meant writer.) :p

  28. thomas h cullen says

    Star Wars The Force Awakens won’t get a release, until Dec 18th 2015. On the one level, this is actually rather ridiculous; the true reality of it is that it’s just capitalism in play. (The narrative thereby of mounting expectations being just as equally ridiculous.)

    Should we rate films, or novels? Is it even rational to have critics, whose function is entirely beside the point? genre is just genre, art is just art. There’s no such thing as a life-changing movie, or a life-changing story (despite art routinely being marketed as such!).

    There are routine functions; there’s life’s casual patterns… I won’t repress myself; when it comes to The Representative, I am a completely sincere person, but the problem is that for me to say something such as The Representative being life-changing literature is to speak utter madness – on that one level!

    What if a person could transcend, in literal ways significant? What if a person were capable, of just finally rejecting the normal paradigms of reality, believing in an “overarching ideal”, an “overarching narrative”?

    It’s one of reality’s indisputable paradigms… it’s own capacity to constantly make us question our reality!!

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      I think there is definitely such a thing as life-changing books and films. Many a story has been a catalyst for change. But it’s a subjective thing: what changes my life won’t necessarily change anyone else’s life.

      • thomas h cullen says

        True. We’ll say different things, depending on when we say them. Reality’s being without bias is what’s driving me…

  29. Aften Brook Szymanski says

    I hadn’t read this before and LOVED it.
    Katie, you’re a rockstar of writely awesomeness. I love your work–even your blogs entries are ‘not-to-be-missed’

  30. As I continue to grow and learn in my writing I continually find myself reading and rereading articles/books you have written. Your words are both encouragement and reality check. Thank you!

  31. robert easterbrook says

    Ok, that made me laugh. And now… back to my soy latte and eavesdropping.

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