Growing up, I had two hobbies: reading and writing. I would devour The Baby-Sitter’s Club, Sweet Valley Twins, The Magic Attic Club, The Boxcar Children, The Gymnasts, etc. (Quality reading, I know.) The maximum number of children’s book you could check out at one time was 10. Every Saturday, I would check out 10 books, go home and read the first chapter of all of them, then put them in alphabetical order and read those ten books by the time the next Saturday rolled around.
I had notebook after notebook filled with potential stories. I’m always way more interested in creating characters and setting up their backgrounds than actually writing the stories. I wish there was a job market for that! I would get the 5-subject notebooks so I could create 5 different stories. Every once in a while I would actually begin to write the stories and I finished a few (pretty lame) ones.
I’ve never been able to stop reading and writing. Although, with this semester, I haven’t opened up a story in months which is very rare for me and I’m just itching to return to it. I read about 2 novels a week and I’m still a big fan of the library. (Why pay for books when I can get them for free?) I love perusing bookstores as well, but there’s just something special about libraries for me. They hold a unique place in my heart.
When I was younger, there was never a doubt in my mind that one day I would be a published author. I didn’t know if I would write children’s books or adult fiction, but I did know I would write. I would marry and become a stay-at-home mom, writing in my spare time. I never had illusions of being famous but knew I had millions of stories floating around in my head that needed to be told. I would tell them and all of my dreams would come true.
I now know it’s not that easy. Breaking into the publishing world is hard. Writing an entire novel that grips people from start to finish, develops characters successfully, and instills the right visual imagery? Even harder. I don’t have grand illusions anymore that writing novels can become a full-time job for me. I know that even published writers work other jobs, or their husbands work overtime or second jobs to keep food on the table.
But the drive is still in me. I know I have what it takes to become a writer, even though I’m not freelancing as much as I should, going to writing conferences, or even writing for my school newspaper. These are all things that aid writers in furthering their career and gain them positive experience in the writing field. I need to be doing these things.
I still have ideas that are itching to get out. I have so many stories that need to be told. God has just totally laid it on my heart that He wants me to glorify Him in this way. (Or maybe it’s just MY will.) Once I started my journalism path, I felt that I was living in God’s will for the first time in a long time. I wasn’t stumbling as much as I used to and when I got kicked down, it was easier to get up.
I’m on the right path. Now it’s just up to me to start turning down the right roads that will lead me to the published path.