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I think I might have realized it somewhat when I used to sit in my bedroom as a teenager and come up with new stories for my favorite cartoons and TV shows. I never wrote any of them down, but I would make up all sorts of new scenarios.
 

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My father used to tell me stories as a toddler. Then when I was about 7 or 8, I wrote an essay at school. It was the longest one I had ever written (about 5 copybook pages) but my teacher explained that a real story would be 100 times longer. I was shocked at this and remember it vividly. Fast forward about 5 years. When my friends were studying in the study hall, I was writing my first novel - about a Russian secret agent. 8) Entered a few short story competitions and won a few prizes. When I was studying chemistry at university, I was deeply unhappy. At 22, I decided nuts to it, I'm going to be a writer. After studying and working for another few years, here I am. And I shall never look back.

That's my story - I love writing!
 

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I think the moment I genuinely, 100% knew I was a writer was when I found myself writing a poem about an empty styrofoam coffee cup when I was supposed to be listening to a lecture on statistics.
 

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One day, in about the seventh or eighth grade, I was sitting there in math class, quietly fuming that it was unfair that so-and-so mocked me mercilessly for everything I did, but because he was a football player nobody dared make fun of him, even if he did sometimes wear the most absurdly tight jeans, and what was with that, anyway? Yeah, he had a cute butt, but that didn't mean...

Oh, wait, wrong "when did you realize" story. Sorry. :)

As a kid, I always had a really wild imagination, and used to make up stories about stuff all the time to entertain myself, being as I was a bit of a lonely wallflower prawn. I think some old SF and fantasy books are directly to blame, perhaps; I remember the author's notes in many of them making it sound like writing and publishing stories was the easiest and most fulfilling thing in the world, and one that, you know, didn't require you to socialize with people or anything like that.
 

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Becoming an author was a career choice.  After college I worked for Dell Inc. taking customer support phone calls.  I worked my way up to a level 3 support position where I traveled the world training other technicians on everything from home desktops to high end enterprise servers and storage solutions specializing on serial attached SCSI setups.  Long story short, after 8 years a new VP stepped in and shut us down because she didn't like that our town didn't have an airport and refused to make her quarterly visit.  So with a big fat severance, unemployment and a good six months notice before the party ended, I had plenty of time on my hands to map out what I wanted to do.  I played video games for a year, then got a call from an old friend who needed help running his office for insurance.  I sat in his office for a year answering the phone and dealing with home and auto insurance issues.  Compared to Dell, this was a snooze-fest.  I had a LOT of time on my hands so I did a little research.  Amanda Hawking was in the news so I read up what I could on her story.  I had already outlined my trilogy so I started to work on the first book while manning the insurance office.  Three months later it was finished and three months after that it was up on Amazon and I was busy with the second book.  I got it finished and published when the building we were in got sold.  My friend moved the business to another town and I moved away as well to manage and maintain my parents resort property.  It took a while to get settled and around July of 2012 I started on the third book of the trilogy and got it up on Christmas.

I remember telling people during those last weeks at Dell that I was going to write books.  Most people gave me funny looks and I told them that it was the furthest thing I could think of from a corporate cube farm tech job.  As for when I realized I was a writer...  I would say when I held the paperback of my second book in my hands.  The first one was very satisfying, but to write a second one and know that there were people out there waiting for me to release it.  That's when I knew.
 

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After I'd already decided on my career. :) It never occurred to me to be an author until I was in a situation where writing was my only outlet.
 

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"Writer" was the only career choice that made any sense to me since I was eight years old.  When I was fresh out of high school I realized it would be a lot harder than I'd thought to break into, and I think I let that discourage me a bit.  I didn't write much in the way of actual stories or books throughout my twenties, but I blogged, and people responded to the way I wrote.  When I began contemplating my divorce at the age of 28, I decided to make a lot of changes in my life all at once.  I legally changed my whole name, changed the day job I had at the time, got the divorce rolling, and declared inside my head, "F it; I'm a writer.  Now that I've said it, I'd better do it."  And I wrote my first novel in three months.

Too bad I didn't pay attention to doing it indie back then.  It was just taking off and I probably could have been a full-timer much sooner.  I'm late to the party, but I'm here, and that's what counts.
 
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When I wrote my first story with a indestructible female warrior who would get run through with giant weapons and not die.

I was in junior high school and it was a play for a class assignment which was about 8 pages too long and never got to the part with the indestructible female warrior when we (started to) performed it in front of class.
 

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glutton said:
When I wrote my first story with a indestructible female warrior who would get run through with giant weapons and not die.

I was in junior high school and it was a play for a class assignment which was about 8 pages too long and never got to the part with the indestructible female warrior when we (started to) performed it in front of class.
That's too bad! It would've been fun to see that part acted out. :)
 

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I was managing a project in Chicago, the biggest one our company had ever gotten up to that point. Flying from D.C. to O'Hare every month or so for a couple days. I was pulling 80 hour weeks to prepare for meetings with the suits, you know, the stereotypical types with the cigars and the gruff demeanors (though, the quieter ones actually turned out to be the more dangerous ones, because they were sneaky instead of being up front about it). I had the eye twitch thing going, the hair was falling out, and I absolutely HATED spending those cold Chicago nights apart from the wife, lonely, depressed, etc..the whole nine yards. One night, I emptied most of the mini bar and I was feeling sorry for myself, wondering how the hell I got myself into this business when I hate everything about it. Then I remember an "A" I got on an English paper in college, and wondered why I hadn't changed majors and tried THAT. Voila, the seed was planted and I couldn't get rid of it. As soon as things calmed down a little, I started writing a novel. That was circa 1994. This one's my third try. I don't know at what point between 1994 and now I crossed the Rubicon, but it happened. I'd say maybe three or four years ago. No single moment, just the slow push of the love of one vocation against the loathing of another like a tree growing. At what point does a tree become a tree?
 

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When I was 11 my best friend was killed right in front of me. When I was able to return to school I wrote out the experience in a detailed short story, complete with illustrations.

My teacher took it up and I never saw it again. But I learned then that writing for me was therapy. I continued it with journals, poetry, and short stories through my rocky childhood, traumatic teen years, and later my first marriage that could've been a Lifetime movie. After a divorce and later meeting my soul mate, things improved and I settled into a nice life. But when I went to China and began working with orphans, the daily sadness and trauma I witnessed sent me immediately back to writing. Those journal entries became my first book and was only intended as a promise to the children that 'I would tell their stories'.

Now I continue to write as therapy as well as to raise awareness for women and children. And I also started another memoir that details all of the traumatic events in my life. Because I don't want to hurt affected family members, it may never be published. But during those now infrequent times when the black cloud of regret and depression settles around me, writing helps me to overcome and get back to being me. Or perhaps more specifically, it helps me get closer to the me I want to be.
 

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I was driving across the country.  Stopped to get gas at a little station.  Walked in and handed my debit card to the young woman.  She looked at it and said 'isn't that funny, you have the same name as my favorite writer'  I smiled and said 'oh really?'  When she figured out it was me and got sooo excited.

By the end of that trip I decided it was time to have my books properly edited, formatted and to get serious about this stuff.  ;)

I also got better about what I look like in public.

Sheila
 

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George Berger said:
One day, in about the seventh or eighth grade, I was sitting there in math class, quietly fuming that it was unfair that so-and-so mocked me mercilessly for everything I did, but because he was a football player nobody dared make fun of him, even if he did sometimes wear the most absurdly tight jeans, and what was with that, anyway? Yeah, he had a cute butt, but that didn't mean...

Oh, wait, wrong "when did you realize" story. Sorry. :)
;D ;D ;D

I hate to be a poop, but being a writer is a job, not some spiritual calling or genetic quality. I became a writer when I started writing. I became a working writer when I started getting money for it. I became a crazy pantsless hermit when I quit my real job to do it full time.
 

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smreine said:
I hate to be a poop, but being a writer is a job, not some spiritual calling or genetic quality.
Yeah, but it's not like getting pregnant either. Just because my wife picked up a notebook a year ago and wrote four paragraphs because she "wanted to write a book, too", doesn't make her a writer. She hasn't picked it up since, and she wasn't one while she was writing those paragraphs because the commitment wasn't there. I think there's a psychological threshold you step over in the process FOR MOST PEOPLE, not for all. You dabble, it feels right, someone says they like what you wrote, and then you write. At some point you step over the threshold and realize you can't go back. But, right up until that threshold, there are COUNTLESS people who turn and walk away without looking back. Those people who turn away aren't writers IMO.
 

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When I was seven and I told my first grade principal that my parents had built a tropical jungle in our living room for our kimono dragons, burmese pythons, and flying foxes. My parents said that I had told him in such great detail and seriousness they were expecting to find the house full of scary animals when they came home from the parent-teacher conference.  ;D They eventually traded some items for a typewriter and then later a computer.
 

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smreine said:
I hate to be a poop, but being a writer is a job, not some spiritual calling or genetic quality.
How dare you! That's not what Guru Rakemfrakem's $399 online course "How Too Awaken the Writer's Inside" says! And he knows what he's talking about because he got a five-book contract from PublishAmerica!

:)
 
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