I don't tell people I'm a writer. Or an artist and I have a BFA in studio art. I keep that to myself for other reasons than to tone down the pretension.
LA taught me that I hate the fuck out of anyone who calls themselves a screenwriter. The ones who aren't repped because they aren't, they're pretenders. The ones who are because they were doing better than me. It's entirely possible I would have gotten further down there had I accepted the mantle but even when I was at William Morris I still introduced myself as a sound mixer. The raw, supplicating indignity of being a screenwriter was a bridge too far. Still is.