Today I have been sober for 14 years. I’m not going to go any detail on that as I have a blog dedicated to all of that sobriety stuff. Right here: Sober Catholic.
#sobrietyhumoralert But some time ago the thought occurred to me that as a writer, (I am one as I do write stuff) I may be at odds with the stereotype of writers being drunken sots. Writing is a lonely profession; being solitary, one is apt to become depressed or otherwise feel a need to offset the lack of professional companionship. Thus writers develop a drinking habit to compensate for all that isolation. Despite the existence of social networks and thus connecting with others, it is still an isolated endeavor. Social networks can also distract you.
Or you drink to get inspiration. I think Hemingway said “Write drunk, edit sober.”
Nevertheless, I defy the stereotype. When I was attempting to become a writer #backintheday pre-Internet and computer, I didn’t drink. When I began drinking, I gave up the idea of writing. When I sobered up, I revisited the whole writing thing.
I can’t even do the “writer as a drunken sot” thing correctly. Just as well. I am a misfit.
On the subject of “misfits,” I did join AA when I sobered up. Again, not going into any detail as I’ve written extensively on it over at Sober Catholic, I never quite fit in there, either. A supposed “Fellowship” of like-minded people who are all united in keeping each other sober, I never quite got the hang of it. I attended zillions of meetings, adopted the language and worked the 12 Steps, did service work (make coffee, set up/clean up), participated in the “meeting before the meetings” and hung out afterwards. Never developed that wonderful “Fellowship” that is discussed so glowingly in the pages of AA literature. I tried, not being overbearing, of course (not my style), but still never saw people away from meetings, never got involved in their lives, nor they in mine. It was as if we didn’t exist outside of the rooms.
Oh, well. Leave it to me to be a misfit in a society of misfits.