• Fri, May 25 2012

10 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Date A Writer

I would never date a writer. I did date one once, and although he turned out to be a strangler and that was our undoing, I knew that it wouldn’t last because of his profession. Dating a writer, like dating a musician (think Adele here, among so many others), is basically setting yourself up for humiliation, torment and a raw exposure for which you probably didn’t bargain. If you really think that every argument or moment of bliss is going to go undocumented by the writer you’re dating, you’re wrong. The writer tells all.

They say that the best writers are the ones who write what they know; and of course what one knows and knows best is what’s immediately in front of them: you. Since I first started writing when I was, oh, I don’t know how old, it’s been the people in my life who have fueled my work. I can say honestly, that I’m not quite sure how to write fiction. The talent that must be involved to come up with a world and people that don’t exist is something I just don’t have in me. I may not be a fan of J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, but that woman is insanely gifted. We’re talking about someone who invented the word “muggle”! Granted, I don’t know what the hell a “muggle” is, but I know it’s Rowling’s doing and that’s pretty fucking fantastic, as it probably is one of the most fun words to say when you need a giggle.

However, I’m sure there are still parts of Rowling’s real life interwoven in her world of wizardry. How could there not be? You can’t completely separate your existence from your art, because without life, art can’t exist and vice versa.

Although I have found that the people I have dated liked whenever I wrote about them, or at least claimed they did, personally, I wouldn’t want someone else sharing the intimate details that I put on display almost everyday for everyone to see. I can put myself on display just fine, thank you; I don’t need anyone else doing it. So while I sit here with Tattoo Guy watching Silence of the Lambs on my couch, I can’t help but think how severely unbalanced he must be in the head every time he asks: “Did you write about me again?” Sure, Tattoo Guy, but this is the last time; I swear.

If anyone out there is dating a writer, let me know! I’m curious how that’s working out for you.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/lindsaychartman Lindsay Cross

    Before I flipped through the slideshow, I was like, “You can interview my husband!” After, I’m like, “Please let him never see this and realize how screwed he is.”

    • Amanda Chatel

      Haha! But some of it is quite true, don’t you think?

    • http://www.facebook.com/lindsaychartman Lindsay Cross

      Oh yea. He’s so experienced the, “Hunnie, it wasn’t that dramatic…” after reading a piece about something that happened to us. And of course I defend myself with, “Well it was to me!”

  • Cassie

    I’m dating a writer- it’s going swimmingly. He writes me marvelous love notes.

  • Sabrina

    I’ve been keeping a tally in my head of things I can write about if me and my bf ever break up… hahaha he knows it though, so it’s ok, right?

  • Bren

    You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should’ve behaved better. -Annie Lamott

    • Amanda Chatel

      I have never heard that quote — it’s gorgeous and perfect. I’m going to write it on my “quote” wall. Thank you!

  • Fatima

    I’m the writer in my current relationship, my boyfriend is an artist. We make things together, and it’s a lot of fun seeing what we can come up with.

    My ex-boyfriend will probably agree wholeheartedly with this post, however. But really: Why is it that the most painful relationships are the best ones to write about?

    • Amanda Chatel

      Our friend Hemingway can answer this one for us all:

      “We are all bitched from the start and you especially have to be hurt like hell before you can write seriously. But when you get the damned hurt use it—don’t cheat with it. Be as faithful to it as a scientist.”

      Oh, Hem.

  • MR

    Not surprised, ‘Hannibal’ is a lot deeper. When Clarice smokes Evelda in that opening scene. Pure inner city. I like a woman who isn’t afraid to walk a tightrope.

  • joe defiant

    people like you and your friends are why i stay home.