If you’ve ever tried to explain what a ‘professional blogger’ is, especially to elder people, you know how difficult that is. After 30 minutes of questions (and my replies), they analyze the field and decide that what I am doing is a waste of time. Well, I can’t totally refute that either 😛
So, I was desperate to find some other answer to that lethal question – ‘What do you do?’. Once, when I was drinking coconut water (Elaneer), the shopkeeper pointed towards someone who just walked by and proudly said (to another person next to him) – ‘You know what, he is a novelist. He writes stories. He always drinks coconut water in my shop.’ The other person was also like, ‘Wow’.
That, ladies and gentlemen, was the biggest motivation & driving factor in me deciding to write a novel – I desperately wanted to change my social status to *anything except a blogger*, and a ‘novelist’ seemed *most glamorous* (at least to others) 😀
So, now, whenever I am asked about my profession or that lethal question – ‘What do you do’, I coolly reply that I am a novelist. The conversation sorta goes like this –
“Wow, you write novels? That’s a great thing to do man.”
“You write in Tamil or English?”
“Oh, good. Have you written and published any novel until now?”
“Yes, I have published one.”
“What’s the title, what’s the story about?”
” . . . “
“Oh, that sounds very interesting. I will buy the novel immediately after I go home.” (That’s a courtesy statement, actually)
“So, do you . . . I mean . . . how are you placed financially? Is it difficult to . . .?”
“No, I don’t earn anything from my novel yet . . . I earn from my bl-“
“I know man, it should be difficult for a novelist – especially when he is new. But you don’t worry – things will become better soon. You keep writing, some day you’ll (10 minutes of suggestions and inspiration) . . .”
“ok. Actually, I have another sourc-“
“It takes years. For some people, a lot of years. But the determination is important. You’ll have to (10 more minutes of analysis and suggestions) . . .”
And then, with a satisfied look in his face, he walks away.
In spite of that assumed non-earning tag of a ‘novelist’, I am still amused at my new found social status. And the excited looks I get from people. There is some charm associated with writing novels – I guess. That a ‘professional blogger’ can never achieve.