The Risk In Dating A Writer

I write quite a bit. Most of what I write about is politics, race, and education. But I also have written a romance novel (soon to be published) and write articles about relationships and love. Generally speaking, writers write about subjects they’re familiar with. If you lived your whole life in New York, chances are that will be the setting for your musings. A war correspondent will write about wars. A romance writer will write about romances, the ones he’s familiar with, the ones he’s been in.

When you date a firefighter or a policeman, there are certain risks you’re aware of when undertaking a relationship. If you date a drug dealer, there’s a good chance that you get caught up in their mess before it’s over. It you date a member of the clergy; your behavior will be watched closely. It comes with the territory. When you date a writer, one always searching for material to write about. One day he might write about you!

For the first time I had someone pull back from me a little when they realized they might one day be the subject of conversation. After reading all my Medium pieces about relationships and seeing in print some of the same things I’d said about my past. She said, “I have to watch what I say around you.”

Much to the chagrin of my agent, I try especially hard to consider the people I write about and not to hurt feelings and cause pain. I’m not the one to put people on blast in public for imagined slights and detail break-ups like its everyone’s business. I try to write about people anonymously. My children read my pieces (if they’re not too long) and I probably give too much consideration as to what they’ll think along with any people I write about.

It gets a little difficult if I write about my college years because through the magic of social media, I’m friends with hundreds of people I went to school with long ago who all have long memories. One writer friend seems to only date people who aren’t on Facebook, lest they see the play-by-play of their relationship show up in their newsfeed.

So, let me issue this disclaimer:

I, William Spivey will do my utmost to respect anyone I may be in a relationship with in my writings. I will never call you out by name for any action good or bad without express consent. I do however, reserve the right to recapture experiences in my writings and you may recognize yourself in blog pieces or in characters in a novel.

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