Are you a closeted writer? Do you write only when nobody looks? Is writing something you never talk about with your cool gang of friends? Are you afraid of being laughed for trying your luck in the risky writing business? If so, you are not alone. Coming out as writer is not easy, especially if your parents are “realistic” and your friends are “skeptic”.

My advice is: take it slow.

Here is an example of how to come out slowly:

Step 1: Tell them about a writer / book that inspired you. Mention being interested in the theme and wanting to explore it further. Drop an idea about writing a review, short article or maybe even a 3-page story. Ask them if they’d like to read it. At this stage don’t tell them that you are planning a novel. They won’t take it seriously and probably won’t believe that you are really capable of writing it.

Step 2: Continue informing them about your progress. Tell them you are thinking about developing your short stories in something longer. Write three chapters and let them read. If they ask you if you want to become a writer, and you don’t feel ready to come out yet, say: “I don’t know. I’m thinking”.

Step 3: When you feel ready, come out as a writer in the following way: “I like writing very much. Others seem to like my stories, too. I am thinking about taking it professionally. I am going to stick to my everyday job, though. It’s hard to make it out there in the writing market.”. Show that you are reasonable. Don’t talk bestsellers and awards when you have no readers and no sells.

If they react positively – continue updating them. If they react negatively – don’t talk to them about it anymore. Find others who are more supportive and keep doing your things. Don’t let others talk you out of your writing. You have the right to live the life that you want.