The question came up during my IIML interview. I have been writing since childhood and I like it. Why then I should say that I did not know what I wanted to do after my school. (It came up when I said I was not particularly fond of studying Computer Science. And one of the interviewers asked me why did I take up Computer Science then. My reply was that I did not know what I wanted to do and hence I went with the traditional choice.)
Anyway, so could I be a writer by profession? For the time being leave aside the question if I would be good enough a writer for people to want to read me and for me to be able to earn enough. That is assume all that is possible. Then, could I be a writer by profession?
No, I could not be, even in that case. Why? I am not the kind who can write out of vacuum. Its not possible for me to make stories about things and people I do not have much experience with. I can not possibly write about a professional if I have not been one or if I have not watched one like a normal person – struggling and trying to get through the normal things of life. If I had not known for myself what the job security or insecurity mean, I could never write about it. I could not write about the middle class life if I have not had enough experience with it. The list goes on. I must feel like one in the world to be able to write about the world. And even if I become neutral to some of the concerns of that people may have, it should not be because I have never been into it, but rather because I have been through it.
It is then that I can write. I would not have made even that much of a writer as I am now, if I had been under the protection of a Court (of older days). 🙂