Is this a legitimate word? A skywatcher? As a word meaning a person who observes stars and celestial objects? I want to use something less academic than an astronomer. I googled it but I'm not so sure. I would really appreciate your help.
It might be an actual word, but it doesn't convey what you want. The sky is high, but stars are far further.
When I hear 'skywatcher', I'm more inclined to think about weather forecasters, plane spotters, bunny-in-cloud-seers, and so on. And Jedis. Look, Skywatcher!
Others have already mentioned stargazer, which sounds relatively familiar. Perhaps spacegazer if you want to be a bit more broad and include planets, moons, asteroids?