Many teens have the secret dream of becoming a famous writer just like for example J.K. Rowling.
But most of them end up burying this dream deep into the dirt long before they reach adulthood and when they are past this age, becoming a writer was just like saying I wish to become a Hollywood celebrity or marry a Royal family. These of course can happen, but it happens only to 1 in a million of people.
But why do people assume that the 1 in a million can’t be YOU?
If we get discouraged and slowly build a lack of faith especially in teenage years, obviously, we won’t likely reach the dream… 100% determination and independent voice are what we need.
If we go back to our childhood, we notice that parents and relatives constantly asked us what we wanted to do when we grew up. We mainly said things like ‘pop star’ but as years passed we began to think of the possibility of achieving this job and we thought, well ‘teacher’ or ‘doctor’ is more reasonable… and approved by the others.
It is not our fault if we easily get discouraged and start to blame ourselves later for not doing the job we love. Since we’re very young, the people and the media told us that what is respectable to do after one graduates is becoming an architect, doctor, accountant, businessman… but a writer?
“This is a joke,” some will tell you.
“Oh you’ll grow out of it,” others will say. “There’s still time for you to change your mind and find a real job.”
A real job? But writing is also about selling and marketing, so we gain money from it, and we constantly have to provide “new products”… It’s a business as a whole, which should be started as a part-time job to go on the full-time famous stage. It’s a question of gradually building your brand.
So it’s still not a job?? Of course we’ll have to start low, in any job we will have to!
It’s risky only because you’re alone in the writing and submitting process or even the whole process for the aspiring indie authors.
Of course the very first book won’t be a success. Unfortunately it doesn’t work like this, except for real geniuses! Hard work is important in every field one undertakes.
If writers easily give up that’s mainly because,
1. the work is done alone
2. there’s the lack of support by your friends and relatives (who keep on telling you you’re wasting your time blahblahblah…)
But we, as teens, must not give up on our dreams! Adults and the media have more influence on us at this stage of our life, but if we really wish to become a writer and actually do it, we’ll be able to go through the critics and disincentives untouched.
How to do this?
Ask this to yourself frequently: what do you love to do?
Write, of course.
Before I go any further, I’d like to tell you that when I came back from a trip to Malaysia one week ago, I thought about my life which has been suspended and realised that there are so many places I’d love to visit in the world, but will I have the time or the money to do so? No. We have limited resources but unlimited wants. So why spend our energy and money on courses we know we don’t really like while there’s the Creative Writing course just waiting next door for us!
And I believe that if one truly LOVES writing, it can definitely become the next #1 bestseller in New York Times!
It’s all a matter of loving the matter. Love first, and let the material things (money, profits whatever parents wish to have) come after.
I’ve always known that I’ll end up in the arts field. I mainly study literature right now in high school, and already people are asking about what I want to do in university. Of course I’ll do my Bachelor of Arts, but in which particular subject? What will be my major? When I was younger, I said Literature, but I don’t want to become a teacher. Psychology? Not recommended by people. Cinema? No way, you’d be ruined! So I used to nonchalantly reply Journalism, without really being sure, but this one is approved. It’s close to being a writer, just that you’ll have to be constantly updated about stuff… and write on them on a regular basis… write realistic articles rather than fiction novels…
I told myself that, it was alright, I could do this.
But… but… I just can’t! I live in my own imaginary world since I’m born! And I love to write on my own, on stuff that interests me, like legends and witches and stuff like that. And I want to publish novels.
When I started to do some research on universities I’d like to go, I found that most of time provided a ‘Creative Writing’ course. If I hadn’t been to Malaysia, I would have said that it’s useless to do it because you can learn the art of writing a novel or whatever online, so go for a more interesting subject, one that you can enjoy, for the fun, while secretly writing your novel… But today, when I went through the other subjects… I always came back to Creative Writing. Because I don’t love anything else as much as this.
Remember, you learn better the things that you love. For example, you’re interested in having sex? Well I’m sure most of teens who are, know much more than their parents on sexual education, right? 😉 (Don’t worry the secret is safe with me)
And maybe the course is not as useless as it seems. At least, we’ll get the support we need to accomplish our dream to write a book, as all the people who will be in the course will share the same ambition. This time, no one will be able to push us down.
Of course, for those who can’t afford to go to college, it’s not necessary at all to take any course on creative writing. But for those in my situation, i.e. we are EXPECTED (I won’t say ‘forced’ but psychologically we are forced) to earn one or more degrees in tertiary and at professional level, please, choose what you love.
Now we are sure that we love to write unconditionally, and we want to embrace this path (it’s a wide one you know, because we can also end up being an editor of anything really, or a marketer! all this while we’re writing our bestseller) so now, how to go past the nasty opinions of people who will aim at discouraging you?
Here’s the key:
They feel they have power over us because we’re minors. To show their maturity, they ask us what we want to do later then give us convincing advice, which may not always be good, except when it comes from a professional career counsellor. Anyway, they ask us:
So dear, what do you want to do at university level? Any dream job yet?
And we answer:
Well, I don’t know. I’m still thinking about it.
They can do nothing here except give us a list of options, which we will discard automatically in our head. We should tell the truth only to our close friends and relatives. Those whom we trust completely and who provide us with unflinching support.
In fact we’re not really lying to the others, because remember that we’re still teens and our life is unstable, so we can never be sure of anything. It’s annoying to tell everyone a particular dream job, then change our mind a month later (oh yeah this happened frequently with me, mostly because I was searching for something else than becoming a writer) and we’ll have to pass the news again. We’re simply hiding the truth.
Although you have a fixed dream in mind, do not shut yourself from other possible careers. Be open to every option and if, like me, you find yourself constantly coming back to becoming a writer, then I think you’ve find your life partner 🙂
Do what you love.
Have faith. Never let go. Don’t get influenced by others. Similar situations are never the same with different people. (did that make sense??) Be independent. Make your own choices. DO IT!!
And who knows? You may be the 1 in a million…
An Evil Nymph.
PS: I’m sincerely sorry if that was too long but I wanted to write this for so long! (actually the moment I settled back from Malaysia into Mauritius)
17 thoughts on “Aspiring Young Writers: This is a Message for You.”
Is it possible to ‘love’ this because I do. I know exactly how you feel. People were less supportive in my choosing to be a writer when I left high school and did a Diploma of Professional Writing and Editing, But I learnt more in that course then I ever would have online. I’m a better writer for it. Creative Writing courses can be good, but you have to pick the right one. I ended up going to TAFE because the writing course there was hands on and actually writing stuff, while a lot of the Uni course were all theory and that didn’t appeal to me at all.Do your research but there is a course out there for you in Creative Writing.
I will also add that the Government in Melbourne thinks creative writing leads to no good jobs so they ended up cutting the creative curriculum from my course the year after I finished. I feel so lucky to have got the chance to do that course before it was ruined.
Slowly people began to respect my choice more and I get a lot more support but I still get hassled in the ‘what job are you going to get?” but to be honest I’m happy doing whatever job I can get and spend the rest of my time writing. It seems that only other writers understand this feeling.
I”m going to reblog this…
Thank you so much for sharing your own experience and feelings about it. Choosing the course – it’s the hardest step for me for the time being but I hope I’ll soon find the right one for me 🙂 Yeah definitely: only writers can actually understand this! Because we prefer to follow our hearts… 🙂
Thanks for reblogging too! ^^ You’re the best!
Reblogged this on The Quill Wielder and commented:
This is a brilliant post about the tough choices for young writers who are trying to find their way in the world
You will make it. 😉
Aww thank you for your support!
My parents always discouraged my love for writing, art, etc. They didn’t see that there are many practical applications that could have merged the two worlds. So my daughter sings, and you know what I tell her? “Sing your heart out! Go for it! Why not be the next big star? If you don’t make it there, I bet you can do a million things with that voice so follow your heart!” She may not be Britney Spears or Miranda Lambert, but she just might be, someday! At least she keeps trying. She put her first album out last year, and she sang in bars to earn the money to put it together. She wrote the songs herself, and even though she hasn’t gone platinum, I hope and pray she keeps on trying! Lovely post.
Most parents who are as such lost faith in their hearts at one point in life and they simply don’t wish the same to happen to their children. That’s sad. Thus, we have to prove them that it is indeed possible to realise dreams 🙂 You’re a great sister! Keep it up and I hope both of you will reach the stars!
Great advice, Daphne, you’re awesome! I’ll be reading your est sellers 😀
*bestsellers you mean? 🙂 Thank you!
Yep, stupid typo 😉
I love to write. It was one my dreams to be a writer too. However, since my brain farts alot, i find blogging is the next best thing to being a novelist!
Haha blogging is a great alternative and it’s as fun as writing a novel 🙂 Anyway, it’s never too late if you ever wish to come back to writing ^^
so true so true! blogging is so much fun!
so true! so true! blogging is so much! now about writing…im still debating….
Great article. Advice I give to my young friends. I wish 30 years ago I’d read something like this!
Thank you! 🙂 Lol well it was never too late!
great post, thanks for sharing