My own thoughts are that a writer/author is somebody who does this for a living because they are well established and can earn enough money doing it. As far as I can tell from 5 years and 10 books trying to do just this, is that the world and his wife are writers/authors with books on Amazon, but only a lucky few (usually with agents and big publishers) can earn a living from it. Therefore are we really writers/authors at all? I usually say at parties that I’m a medical secretary who writes novels for a hobby. I leave out the ‘writer/author’ bit, because it’s going to be a long time (if ever) before I can earn a living just from writing books.

Suburban Syntax

image of hedge maze

Is there a difference?

I was inspired by author K.M. Allan’s post ’10 Signs You’ve Upgraded To Being A Serious Writer’ and began thinking about all the ways people who write label themselves and one another, especially on the internet.

If you’re reading this, chances are you like to write. Maybe you fancy yourself a “writer”, an “author”, or an “aspiring writer”? How many times have you read the words “aspiring writer” on the internet this week?

The way writers self-identify is fascinating to me. The way literary circles and internet marketing use these words as labels and identifiers is even more interesting.

Let’s take a look


  • Someone who writes
  • Someone who writes for a living (novelist, journalist, blogger)
  • Someone who writes books (specifically)
  • Someone who wants to sound cool at parties


  • Someone who writes
  • Someone who writes a lot
  • Someone who is the author of published book(s)

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