iMposter? Party Crasher? You be the Judge
by Christy Sillman
“Wow, everyone there is writing a novel,” remarked my husband Steve as we drove away from the iPinion party the other weekend.
That’s because they are writers. Remember? I’m the imposter. The nurse-wolf in writer’s sheepskin clothing – except I haven’t come to eat anyone.
I mean seriously. I was treated for dyslexia as a child. I spent most of my childhood in the “special reading” classes. My brother is the English major and married a newspaper editor — my talents have always been found elsewhere, never behind a pen (or keyboard, for that matter).
The only writing I do as a nurse is in my charting, and there are strict legal rules about leaving all emotions, attitudes and opinions out of your charting. Your words need to be as sterile as your gloves. So, the basic writing requirement for my job is the ability to write English in a cohesive, logical manner. You’d be surprised how hard it is for some people to meet this qualification.
So exactly how did I become a writer for iPinion? It all started with a Facebook status update — doesn’t everything nowadays.
Having graduated from high school with Mr. iPinion, David Lacy and I shared many mutual friends, but weren’t ever actually friends in high school or on Facebook. I was probably snotty to him in some way, and I’m just waiting for him to wreak some diabolical and well thought-out revenge on me. But, maybe not.
After seeing his highly intellectual and opinionated comments on some of our mutual friend’s posts, I decided this was someone I needed to be friends with. Mostly because I completely agree with his position on pretty much everything. Well, except for his love of running.
So, I took a chance and sent him a friend request. I think he accepted it in like 30 seconds. Totally awesome for my anxiety-ridden anticipation of making a friend request and ending up in the “maybe” acceptance-risk category. We bantered back and forth, and soon he started plastering my newsfeed with information about his new website called iPinion. I thought it was really cool, and even promoted it on my wall. Then something totally unexpected happened.
Mr. iPinion asked if I wanted to write for iPinion.
Who? Me? Oh, I’m not a writer. I’m a nurse.
Mr. iPinion assured me that I was indeed a writer, and that I should attempt to write something so he could see if his hunch would pay off.
My first few columns were a little janky. I was trying too hard, and wasn’t really sure where my voice was in it all. I was also terrified of how stupid I’d look to David and all the other iPinion people. I mean, my brother sends my emails back to me corrected just for fun.
I’m not a writer.
But I found it to be challenging and exhilarating at the same time. I was getting feedback I never expected, and I had a picture on the homepage and everything! I kept thinking the caption under my face should have read “huh?” but it kept saying “columnist” instead.
The columns have kept coming, and despite my continued anxiety that this next column will be the one that breaks my writer façade, I’m still here and I’m still writing.
These are some amazing writers I have the honor of sharing company with, and I feel truly blessed by this gift in my life. It has brought so much to me, and has helped me redefine who I am and what I’m capable of. Not to mention that my nursing notes have become quite colorful within their sterile limits.
This is not a ploy for you all to tell me that I AM a writer and blah, blah, blah.
Don’t even waste your breath because I probably still won’t believe you. I still feel like the guest who’s visiting for dinner. I just beg that if I overstay my welcome, you’ll kindly show me the door before I become that idiot who crashes on your couch for three months.
Until then, pour me another glass of wine and turn up the music.