How to Love a Girl who Writes.

Via on Apr 28, 2013

 

late night writer

Much has been made of dating a girl who reads, but what of the other side of that coin?

For a girl who writes is a double-threat: she is well read, yet creates worlds of her own as well. If you find a girl who writes—find her charming, wish to court her—there are a few things you should know.

Be prepared for her to leave you.

Not for long, but there will be those moments where she’s mumbling and she gets that look in her eyes and you know you’ve lost her. An idea, a character, a song has caught hold and she must capture it; she’ll be back. Even better, she’ll come back and tell you all about it.

If you love a girl who writes, please be patient. She can walk into the library and remember exactly which shelf Neil Gaiman is tucked away on, but more often than not, she can’t find her shoes. She knows 40 different words for rain across seven different languages, but she won’t always remember to buy more milk. She’ll have a list going, but it may become cluttered with ideas and random phrases, with future book titles and character names.

Sometimes she will be late because she pulled over to jot something down in her Moleskine or had to re-write something just one more time. You’ll be glad for her attention to detail as time goes on, I promise.

Tell her, gently, when her pen chewing has left a little ink beside her mouth, and make her go outside when she’s furrowing her brow after an unsuccessful wrestling match with words. Remind her that though she loves them, there is a whole world beyond to revel in, to re-fuel and return to them restored. (Embrace her love of alliteration; it makes her happy, even if it seems a bit silly at times.)

She will not always tell you how she feels out loud.

And even if she does, trust to the fact that she’s rolled it around in her brain (and possibly her journal) for quite some time before she comes out with it. Her words are her tools, her armor. She’s best with them when she can shift and spin them on the page. In her throat, sometimes they get caught and fall out all at once—or worse—slide back down and vanish until they flow through her fingers into her next story.

She will send you a song, a sonnet or start a philosophical argument with you. It’s her way of flirting with you. It’s like the writer girl combination of a hair toss and licking her lips. Play along.

Inevitably, you will show up in her pages (hopefully when she isn’t angry with you). If you love a writer, you will be immortal. She will capture you for all time as she remembers you walking with snowflakes gently falling in your hair, or the way you looked at her right before the last time you kissed. She’ll use a turn of phrase—or an inside joke—to include you in her work.

Brush up on your Shakespeare and, please, have your own opinions. Though she’s tickled when they match her own, she’ll love the parry and thrust of a good debate. And if you want to win her heart for good, know your way around a semi-colon.

I’ll let you in on a secret: she likes her alone time.

As much as she loves you, she won’t mind when you head out adventuring on your own, so long as you return and tell her stories before she falls asleep. She loves having time to get lost in her world of words, and sometimes forgets to stop to eat, or shower or spend time with people. The world on the page is as real and important to her as the “real” world. So if she bursts into tears over her cup of Genmaicha, don’t take it personally. She finally realized how to end her story and is going to miss her characters terribly.

If you want to give her a gift, think metaphor—not cliche. Skip the roses and give her daisies. Better yet, send her some of her favorite tea or a book that made you think of her. Give her bits of stardust and remind her that life is much more than just words on a page. Remind her that some of the best stories are collaborations. Write her letters and she’ll keep them forever. Write her a sonnet and she’ll keep you as well.

If you find a girl who writes, sift through all of her scraps of paper, half-filled journals and half-drunk cups of tea and take her by the hand. Gently ask her to set aside her laptop and return to the land of the living—for at least an hour or two—to dance and play.

(After all, that’s where all the best stories come from in the first place.)

But perhaps most importantly of all, if you love a girl who writes, read.

 

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About Kate Bartolotta

Kate Bartolotta is the strongest girl in the world. She is the love child of a pirate and a roller derby queen. She hails from the second star to the right. Her love of words is boundless, but she knows that many of life’s best moments are completely untranslatable. When she is not writing, you may find her practicing yoga, devouring a book, playing with her children, planting dandelions, or dancing barefoot with her heart on her sleeve. She is madly in love with life and does not know how this story ends; she’s making it up as she goes. Kate is the owner and editor-in-chief of Be You Media Group. She also writes for The Huffington Post, elephant journal, The Good Men Project, The Green Divas, Yoganonymous, The Body Project, Project Eve, Thought Catalog and Soulseeds. She facilitates writing workshops and retreats throughout North America. Heart Medicine, Kate's book on writing, is now available on Amazon.com You can follow Kate on Facebook and Twitter

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53 Responses to “How to Love a Girl who Writes.”

  1. Dawn Cartwright Dawn Cartwright says:

    Absolutely beautiful beautiful. This, I do believe, is my all time Kate Bartolotta fav. Thanks for enlightening the world. I'll be sending a link to every man I date. xo Dawn

  2. Jasmin Kuehnert says:

    Lovely! And so well expressed. I'll share this with my husband who'll appreciate it since he's already doing all the above and more. He not only understands what it is like to be married to a writer, but supports and encourages me during the rough patches. Thank you!

  3. jennifer says:

    Beautifully written, Kate! I can think of someone to send this to as a, "see, it's not just me!" sort of validation.

  4. Philip says:

    Oh my, this article took my breath away. I have known such a girl who writes! And she is mysterious and with deep, complex feelings just as described. Great read, thanks!

  5. Jennifer S. White Jennifer White says:

    Kate, this is beautiful. You always write amazing pieces, and with such an original voice, but this is strikingly unique and inspired. Thank you!

  6. Reality says:

    Awful. You didn't describe a writer. You described a dilettante.

  7. Sara says:

    Oh my. I love this. how did you know my secrets?

  8. Padma Kadag says:

    Diamonds! what about diamonds? does she want/need diamonds?

  9. sufey says:

    Je t'adore, Kate. You captivate me. <3

  10. Kate,
    Love it! Can relate to so much, especially "She will not always tell you how she feels out loud" and "she likes her alone time."

    The other challenge is using everything including relationship as inspiration and source for writing, which sourced my FB cover :)

    Thanks so much,
    Adam

    • Freya Watson Freya Watson says:

      I remember reading somewhere years ago that writers prostitute their lives for their art… a grain of truth in that, I think, although I might use different words!

  11. Paula Reeves-Carrasquillo says:

    It boils down to respecting her art, because writing is a creative art and requires both real-world inspiration and solitary contemplation. Love it!

  12. Tammy J. Palmer says:

    It's so nice to know that there are others like me out there. Fun post.

  13. Sara Lingafelter Sara says:

    You sift through my journals and scraps of paper and we have a SERIOUS problem. Otherwise, spot on, and thank you for the opportunity to be reminded of what's in me, this morning. I'd have flitted the morning away, if I hadn't seen this, which after reading, sent me straight to my journal and the pile of books on my nightstand.

  14. The Typist says:

    Simply wonderful, Kate. Makes me want to go on a date with a writer immediately. I'll also say that if I were to write a piece about how to date a *guy* that writes, it would be almost word for word what you've written here.

  15. lovebtwnthelines says:

    This is an absolutely awesome post. Everything written here is true about me and how I view my own writing. I should print this and hand it to those who attempt to date me. Then maybe, just maybe, they'll get me. :)

  16. Jacinta says:

    Ha! Love it ~

  17. Andre says:

    A little note to the girl who writes
    With imagery conceived thru sight
    Not fashioned from the pupiled scan
    Nor necessarily yet known to man
    Your firmament is fixed on floating
    And buoyant as a keel gone boating
    What wonders shall you have to sift
    And reason thru those words to smith
    Deny a tongue-tie and bows your gift

  18. Love it Kate! :) Hope there'll be a man who'll never get bored of loving this writing-type :)

  19. Freya Watson Freya Watson says:

    Are you sure there's a world out there beyond… ;) I loved it, Kate. Yes alone time is hugely precious, and the ease with which words spill onto paper rather than out the mouth. Thanks!

  20. Kenny Klein says:

    I love a girl who writes. This made me tear up.

  21. Cris Gladly says:

    Yes!!! Exactly!!! And I laughed at this b/c this very night, I am writing, and my boyfriend (who lives all the way in Australia, me in the U.S.) had dinner delivered to my doorstep so I wouldn't have to break my focus. And as I read this, i was drinking Genmaicha. hahaha!!! This describes me almost exactly. Well done!!!

  22. Silvia says:

    I am so grateful for these truths.

  23. cassandralanesmith says:

    "She will send you a song, a sonnet or start a philosophical argument with you. It’s her way of flirting with you. It’s like the writer girl combination of a hair toss and licking her lips. Play along."

    omg Kate, this is dead on. and so clever. thank you for writing this, i loved it!

  24. Gerry Ellen Avery Gerry Ellen says:

    what a great article! Sheds light on why it takes me so long to get in the shower, when I would rather be plucking away at the computer :) And, it gives new meaning to those who might not understand why I do what I do. Thank you for saying the obvious-to me, anyway :) Grateful…..

  25. LB Morgan says:

    You've cleared up so many questions I had about myself. honestly, this is a freakishly insightful article. Alliteration! Don't ask me about Tiny Town!

  26. AngryBirds says:

    Ok where do I start? This article makes me want to puke. Generalising about 'women who write' is ridiculous. Implying that we're all so away with the fairies that we can't tie our own shoes is offensive. Speak for yourself, lady. I hold down 2 jobs and still keep on top of my housework. Women are all individuals, something we have enough of a problem expressing in this world of homogenised advertising. You do us no favours with this nauseating clap trap.

    Women who write are all real live grown women, not fragile, ephemeral, willowish figures of fantasy who need buffering from the real world. Everyone applauding this… you need to change your diapers because something smells.

    • Yep, speaking for myself. And for anyone else who felt the same. As it stands, I hold down, well, 4 jobs if you want to divide up my personal businesses, take care of my children and still love to get lost in my writing.

      Sorry to hear you found it personally offensive!

      • AngryBirds says:

        But you're not speaking for yourself though. You are generalising about female writers. Your comments about a man needing to be on hand to wipe ink from our mouths are the height of condescension. You can get lost in writing without being hopeless at everyday tasks… learn the difference.

        While you're at it, you should learn the difference between writing in the first person about your personal experiences, (in which case you would have written "Sometimes I will be late") and writing in the 3rd person to generalise about everybody ("Sometimes she will be late"), which is what you did. So don't claim you are merely 'speaking for yourself'. This kind of saccharine nonsense does other women no favours.

  27. Roger Wolsey rogerwolsey says:

    And ladies, this applies to loving Boys who write too. : )

  28. Bex1 says:

    Loved this post! It relates to my friends and flatmate too! I shall ensure I share with them so they can truly understand me (and thank you for helping ME understand me)
    :0)

  29. leslieschipper says:

    This story spoke to me in SO many ways. Every sentence rang true and I immediately sent it to my man who does an incredible job of loving me and dealing with all my whimsical, forever inspired writers tendencies (and loves me even more for it) grateful to have stumbled upon this article this morning and thank you for sharing :)

  30. Mila says:

    Loved this – a good companion piece to the essay on dating a girl who reads.

    One of my favorite – well, I took it as a compliment – no matter how it might have been meant, but once a girl wrote to me that she didn't think she'd ever be able to date me because (according to her), I'm 'too good at capturing people in my words', and that she'd be afraid to see herself represented so honestly.

    To me – to become a part of someone else's story, to be seen with both my imperfections and perfections and represented just a tiny bit or a lot – even if it's as unflattering as a bad photo on Facebook – that's a gift.

    • Janna says:

      What a bittersweet compliment! I admire her acknowledgement of her fear of being captured and described accurately. Authenticity and vulnerability are scary places to stand.

  31. mandyeward says:

    You managed to almost perfectly describe me when I first started out… I'm a little more organised now – I have to be as I'm a guider for both a brownie and a guide unit and I have two children, one of whom is Aspergers and requires more care than a normal 12 year old.

    To anyone who doesn't see themselves in this article in anyway, are you letting reality blind you? All writers, whether Male or Female are like this. All Artists in fact (I should know, I am engaged to an Illustrator / Animator) are like this… allowing the realities of life to come between you and your Art stops you from connecting with the other worlds properly.

    Of course this is only my opinion, but being a writer I have an opinion and I am willing to discuss it and possibly change my mind. :D

    • AngryBirds says:

      "To anyone who doesn't see themselves in this article in anyway, are you letting reality blind you? All writers, whether Male or Female are like this. All Artists in fact (I should know, I am engaged to an Illustrator / Animator) are like this.."

      Well, I must be completely wrong about myself. 'Blinded by reality', as you so insightfully put it. Never let reality get in the way of a dreamy, saccharine narrative about how all writers have the same traits and personality. Thank you for helping me see that a stranger in a message board can more accurately assess my personality than I myself can. And thank you for adding to the store of knowledge in the world with your confident assumptions based on your vast experience of arty people – your fiance.

  32. slsimms says:

    I <3 this Kate! Maybe one day I will feel comfortable enough to own "I am a writer" and not say "I love to write."

  33. kniplingsdyret says:

    This is me:

    She will send you a song, a sonnet or start a philosophical argument with you. It’s her way of flirting with you. It’s like the writer girl combination of a hair toss and licking her lips. Play along.

    Spot on!

  34. trishalotzer says:

    Love this. Thank you!

  35. samdewitt says:

    Thank you for this. Now I'm off to find the writing woman of my dreams. In my fantasy, we can sit in our living room overlooking the city, each of us typing out our respective works of art, making each other laugh with a pithy comment or turn of phrase.

    Cheers.

  36. Ronna Holtz ronna26 says:

    Kate, you nailed it. xo

  37. jessj says:

    This is pretty much the greatest thing I have ever read. Debatable, but I'm sticking with it.

  38. Janna says:

    Beautiful! Poetic! Melodic! I enjoyed this read and almost fell in love with the writer you wrote about.

  39. ozgeburcaka says:

    Love this!

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