I suspect we’ve all said it; describing ourselves as being ‘just’ something. Shrugging off our achievements with a ‘just’.
For a long time I was a published writer, but ‘just’ poetry. ‘Just’ on webzines. Then I got short stories into anthologies, but I was ‘just’ a short story writer, with nothing of my own.
In May this year, I released my debut novella, and I also made another big decision. I changed all of my website branding from saying ‘writer’ to ‘author’. There are some people out there who see this as a tiny, flippant thing, but most of the writers I speak to see this as a huge self-affirming step in their career. Some still don’t dare take it.
The thing is though, I still felt like a fraud. Why? Because it’s ‘just’ a novella, and it’s ‘just’ an ebook. I still didn’t feel, in my heart, like a real author.
Something changed all that. And it’s this:
Everyone has their own self-imposed targets, their own milestones that they have to hit in order to feel like they can move on to the next level. And this was mine. When I finally held my own paperback in my hand, I no longer felt like a fraud. I can finally hold my head high, and say “Yes, I am an author.”