20 Not-So-Great Things About Dating a Writer

There’s a popular blog post being linked to discussing 20 Great Things About Dating a Writer. It’s all very peachy and SARKy and amusing and true. I would print it out and seal it with a kiss and give it to the Fairy GodBoyfriend in half a heartbeat.


The other half of that heartbeat knows the dark side of those twenty items. That half knows what lies beneath because I, too, have dated a writer. Couple of them. One time, it didn’t turn out so well. One time is all it takes to make you jaded.

So ladies, don’t say you haven’t been warned. (Men, you are welcome to switch pronouns.)

  1. Writers will romance you with words. He has also romanced twenty other woman around the globe (thanks to the internet) with very similar words. He’s done character studies and knows exactly what to say to make you 100% sure he is your soulmate. Like his fiction, little of it is true. But he got into your pants now, didn’t he?
  2. Writers will write about you. He will use your name and the name of anyone else you know that you ever thought of having as a main character. He will also cut and paste into his manuscript, word for word, your suggestions for fixing his short story.
  3. Writers will take you to interesting events. He will then use your influence and connections to be introduced to all of your writer friends and publishers, all of whom he will later ask for favors.
  4. Writers will remind you that money doesn’t matter so much. So don’t be surprised when you need to send cash for a plane ticket. Or a hotel room. Or a divorce settlement. Or an incident with bed bugs. Or his book launch party. Or his mortgage. Or to cover a bank overdraft. Or when he got mugged. Or after the bus accident. Or the vacation with his other girlfriend. Those pesky publishers never do pay on time.
  5. Writers will acknowledge and dedicate things to you. Because you should get SOMETHING for all you’ve done.Then do the math and realize that book he dedicated to his new girlfriend had its manuscript turned into the publisher while you were still dating.
  6. Writers will offer you an interesting perspective on things. There’s a reason for everything–even the things that don’t quite feel right–and it all makes sense. You will have no clue he’s cheated on you the whole time until a month after you break it off.
  7. Writers are smart. It’s an attractive trait. And when you find yourself alone and penniless you are oddly impressed that he got away with so much for so long.
  8. Writers are really passionate. Sociopaths are also really passionate.
  9. Writers can think through their feelings. The more control he has over his feelings, the more control he has over you.
  10. Writers enjoy their solitude. You have NO idea what he’s been doing all day while you were at work. None.
  11. Writers are creative. Boy, are they.
  12. Writers wear their hearts on their sleeves. At least, they wear the hearts they know you’d like to see. On GAP sleeves. And he left his wallet at home. Would you mind…?
  13. Writers will teach you cool new words. Like “Narcissistic Personality Disorder.”
  14. Writers may be able to adjust their schedules for you. But don’t be surprised when he doesn’t come to bed. He’s been up all night writing. To his other girlfriend. In Europe.
  15. Writers can find 1000 ways to tell you why they like you. Only he won’t. Not for less than $.05 a word.
  16. Writers communicate in a bunch of different ways. So if he never gives you his phone number, it’s a big red flag. Also, be sure you write down all those email addresses he uses, so you know what aliases to block on Facebook later.
  17. Writers can work from anywhere. It’s all about tax evasion, darling. The farther away he is from you, the farther away he is from your country’s legal system.
  18. Writers are surrounded by interesting people. The most interesting ones, you will never meet.
  19. Writers are easy to buy gifts for. And if you give him access to your credit card he will buy gifts for you too. And his other girlfriends.
  20. Writers are sexy. By some accounts, so was Ted Bundy.