I haven’t blogged in a quite a while (again). Thirty is certainly shaping up to be quite an interesting year for me, indeed. I have an announcement, but first some background.
Writing is my passion
When I was in elementary school, my favorite part of the day was when we got to write in our journals. I loved both the specific assignments (one particular favorite was how you would survive on a desert island with only an umbrella) and the free writing time that allowed us to be creative on our own terms (even if my imagination did sometimes get me in trouble).
When I was in 8th grade we chose our classes for freshman year, but I was told that freshmen couldn’t sign up for journalism. I was sad, but being a rule-follower, prepared myself to sign up for 10th grade. Imagine my surprise when I found out that someone else had signed up with no problem and I was the odd lady out. I was determined that I would join the newspaper staff and that I would eventually become the editor.
From 10th-12th grade I wrote for The Mountain Echo at FHS. My junior year I was the opinion editor (boy did I have opinions) and by senior year I was Editor-in-Chief. Also in my senior year, I applied for a scholarship that provided me the amazing experience to serve as the only female from North Carolina who was chosen to attend a conference in Washington, D.C. with other aspiring journalists (a boy and a girl from each state).
My freshman year at Harvard I started the comp process for The Crimson. Grand elections were held that December and I proudly called myself a Crimson editor as part of the news board (crime beat, if you’re curious). I never thought I would ever stop writing.
Leaving The Crimson
Then I met a boy. This boy was not supportive of what I wanted to do. This boy convinced me to quit The Crimson. I left writing behind my junior year of college. I’ve regretted it ever since.
Almost five years ago the pull of writing was too strong for me to ignore, so I started blogging. At first I only blogged about fitness and healthy living, but as the years ticked by, I realized I wanted to write about more. I missed writing about current issues, I missed writing opinion pieces, I missed writing feature stories.
Luckily, by this point I had met another boy. This boy encouraged me, supported me, and shared my love of writing.
Still, I mostly did other things. I got my master’s degree in Counseling Psychology, I became a certified personal trainer, I continued working in research. All the while, I was still writing because writing is what I love.
With one post on Facebook from a fellow blogger nearly two years ago, I applied to be a freelance writer with a newly established company. I got the position, wrote a few pieces, and fell in love. Within a year, another fellow writer posted about another opportunity. I applied and got the gig. You’ve likely seen some of the writing I’ve done for both of these outlets (the Fix.com blog and The List).
The more freelance writing I did, the more I realized that writing is still what I want to spend my life doing. Yes, I want to write about fitness, but I also want to write features and opinion pieces. I want to write fiction and non-fiction. I want to write anything and everything.
So I started writing more articles, as many as I thought I could manage while still working a full-time job. I kept hoping that I would be able to eventually work my way to full-time writing and maybe even eventually to editing.
Then I took a leap of faith. I had an idea and presented it to The List. While they didn’t run with the idea I had, they told me they had openings on the editorial team and offered me a position editing in addition to my writing.
Something that I thought was years away was suddenly presented to me, gift-wrapped with a giant bow. It would mean a temporary reduction in pay, and some penny pinching as a result, but it was my dream. So I took it.
I gave my notice at my research job on Wednesday, February 8 and will start my new position on the editorial team of The List on Wednesday, March 1.
I am more nervous, excited, terrified, and thrilled than I have ever been about anything.
While I will miss many of my coworkers, this is an opportunity I couldn’t pass up. My days will now be filled with all of the writing and editing my heart desires (and probably then some). I know it won’t all be rainbows and unicorns, but it’s my dream.
When I walked away from writing and editing my junior year in college, I thought there was no way I could ever go back. I’m here to tell you that while you may not be able to go back, you can always go forward and sometimes the destination is the same.
Don’t give up on your dreams, no matter how long they’ve been on the back burner or the dust-covered shelf. Most of all, don’t ever let a boy (or a girl) convince you to put your dreams on hold.
“Things may come to those who wait, but only the things left by those who hustle.”