Are You a Writer?

Do you remember the ads in comic books and kid magazines that invited you to Draw Me! and find-out if you are an artist? Ever wish there was a test like that for writers? Maybe there is.

In case you don’t remember the Draw Me! ads; they featured images like these

Can you draw me? Can you draw me?

and offered prize money or scholarships to the Art Instruction Schools, Inc. All you had to do was draw the image and send it to them and they would tell you if you were an artist or not.

Recently, I read an article on The Write Practice blog titled, Why Do You Write? They did not include my reason for writing–people fascinate me. It lead me to ask what makes a writer?

Study this photograph carefully.

To this gentleman's left is a park and a beautiful view of the river.

If you thought, so what it is a guy in a chair, you may not be a writer. But if you wondered why he chose to sit on the sidewalk and face the the wall, you may be a writer. If the photo bugs you and you start to concoct possible reasons why he is facing the wall, you are definitely a writer. If it made you so curious you would photograph it as I did, you are probably a writer. If you have already named the guy, there is no hope for you, you must write!

A writer is not a person with a large vocabulary who can regurgitate grammar and punctuation rules, a writer is a person who is curious about people and is not afraid to express their view of the world as clearly as possible. They are willing to report the intricacies of the human spirit both good and bad. They use words to paint accurate pictures and evoke emotions. This is the part of a writer that is born.

Don’t get me wrong, grammar, punctuation, spelling and sentence structure are very important, but can be learned and mastered with a little hard work.

Curiosity about other people and the desire to entertain with it, cannot. When I evaluate writers for a writing class this is what I seek; not perfect grammar and spelling.

So are you a writer?

Please post your thoughts regarding the photograph in the comments below.

I wonder if this guy placed the gnome on the porch or did some one else? Why did they place it there? What’s the story behind the Moose?

17 responses to “Are You a Writer?”

  1. Here is my backstory. I think he is sitting outside his girlfriend’s house because they do not have air conditioning. She is in the hot, stuffy apartment getting the hamburgers and potato salad ready. He is supposed to be getting the grill started, but instead he is texting with another woman. He is facing the wall because he has a dark-red birth mark that covers half his face. He does not like to be stared at.

    His girlfriend is thin; has very thick glasses; thin, mousey hair and a high forehead. He thinks she is ugly and although he is not physically abusive, he does not treat her very well because he feels she is beneath him. He is afraid to be alone.

    The girl he is texting has not seen a photo of him because he uses a fake photo on his profile. The photo is of his unmarked, recently dead brother. The text girl claims to be an aspiring model.

    Franny, the girlfriend, is from a hunting family. Her father used to take her moose hunting in Alaska. It hit her hard when her father died. She is afraid of being of alone so she clings to Jerry, the guy in the chair, because she thinks she can’t get anyone better.

    Franny’s dream is to get married and have a real house with a yard and garden and maybe a swing set and sandbox for the kids. Jerry keeps her in-line by dangling this dream like carrot . Until one day…


  2. I’m wondering why he’s looking at the wall instead of the newspaper? Maybe he’s illiterate or autistic? Or maybe he’s dead and the killer has turned him that way around to give him more time for a get-away? Maybe he’s just a really obvious voyeur and the object of his desire is behind the blinds?


    • I think he is talking on a cell phone, but wow! the possibilities! A good example of why it’s always better to tell the truth or people, especially writers, will make-up their own stories and they will be far worse than the truth.


  3. The fact that he wants to be outside but is literally turning his back on the experience of the outside world is compelling, but I think what got me was the crazy combination of the mounted moose next to the door (like some kind of Canadian hunting mezuzah) with what looks like a garden gnome next to the door.

    Can’t wait to read more!


    • We have another writer here! Thank you!

      Kelli, the photo was taken in Trenton, Michigan. I am so used to seeing moose and deer signs like that, I did not think about it. Location, location, location.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I was more annoyed that the photo was not level than what the guy was doing. The moose got my attention, and the grill. I may be more a photographer than a writer, eh?
    FYI…just so you know, usually if I’m required to take the time to write my name, blog, etc., I skip commenting. I understand why you might want to go that route. I followed you here from 201, so thought I’d comment anyway. Can you tell me your reasoning for requiring the info?


    • What do you mean by this “FYI…just so you know, usually if I’m required to take the time to write my name, blog, etc.,” You should not have to do that.

      Oh, wait. I think I have set so there are no anonymous comments, but if you are on WP you should not have to write your name blog. It should do it automatically.

      The street is not level.


  5. I started to come up with ideas about what’s in the room and why he’s guarding it so ardently, then I read the caption underneath and it made me laugh – fantastic – I love how wonderfully weird people are.

    Great post – love your site!


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