I’ve wanted to be a writer for as long as I can remember, but I didn’t fathom I could make a career out of it until my junior year of high school. Back then, writing was a hobby for me, and the plan was to get a decent, stable job where I could hopefully write a page here and there until finally creating my first novel.
I went through many stages as a child, all of which I eventually abandoned. I wanted to be Pocahontas and was told there could only be one. I wanted to be a vampire and found out that they don’t exist. I wanted to be a singer and never got any solos. I wanted to be an actress and always got the background parts. I wanted to be a veterinarian but can’t stand it when animals die. I wanted to be a nurse and realized I’m not very good with science…or math…or sick people. So what could I be? What could I do?
Everything in my life kept changing- my career, my values, my home, my identity. The only thing that remained consistent was my writing. I knew that -no matter what happened or who I became- I would always write, because writing is who I am, as cheesy as that sounds.
In my junior year, I signed up to take AP English III, not because I needed the AP credits but because I sought more of a challenge than regular English could give. That is where I met the teacher that, for lack of better words, changed my life. Not everyone is lucky enough to have that one teacher who embeds such a great impact on you that it causes you to set on a completely new path, one you never knew existed. She was this teacher for me, and she did all that and so much more.
She taught me to have pride in my writing and to never be ashamed to share it with others. But most of all, she cared. I didn’t just see it; I felt it down to my very core, and I admired her for this compassion, consciously looking forward to her class every day.
I quickly grew an adoration towards English, when before I had only ever considered it just another subject that I happened to favor above the others. After passing the AP English Composition test with a 4, even though the majority of my classmates failed, I realized something that shouldn’t have taken me so long to discern: that this is what I’m good at, this is what I can do, and writing is no longer just a hobby for me. And when the end of the school year approached and my teacher asked our class to take out a piece of looseleaf and tell her what field we planned to study, I picked up my pen without hesitation and wrote “English.”
My next step: choose a university.
Are you in college now? If so, what are you majoring in? How different is this career path compared to those you aspired towards as a child?
Leave a comment below. 🙂