Why I Chose to Become a Writer

It all started when I was eleven or twelve years old and I was attending writing classes at a middle school in Matawan as one of their Saturday morning classes. My teacher was a bit eccentric but I enjoyed practicing my writing and eventually presenting one of my short stories in front of the class. I didn’t fully consider myself a writer then because it wasn’t yet a passion of mine but things changed drastically a few years later when I was fourteen and in a writing camp at Brookdale Community College. At Brookdale I truly began to flourish as a writer as I wrote poetry, short stories, and other types of pieces. After that summer I felt I really was a writer.
Writing became an all-consuming passion of mine after that camp and I began seriously writing stories about the characters I had come up with in my head—Samantha and Michael Jaqueries and the friends that Samantha made (often other boys she knew). I was still very amateurish in my writing style but over time began to flesh out my characters more so that they were fully evolved and unique characters. Michael and Samantha are characters I wrote about up until this year.
In high school I always thought that I’d become a famous novelist that was recognized around the world but this dream began to evaporate over time as my interest in my novels began to wane by the time I was in college. After being critiqued on one of my novels I was crestfallen and came to the realization that I was uncertain about sharing my writing with the world.
Once I graduated college I still wrote my novels but not to the extent that I had in my earlier years of college. I began focusing more on finding the right job for me and dabbled in some freelance work for clients I was hired by on a website for freelancers, Elance. On Elance I did travel research for one client while also writing for Patch, an online media outlet, and the Holmdel Happenings, a local newspaper.
Writing became a job for me when I was hired as the assistant to the president of the nonprofit organization I had interned for in the summer before my senior year of college. I learned how to write press releases, formal letters, profile stories, and other pieces and really matured in my writing style. I knew then that I had truly become a professional writer.
When I lost this job it was a major setback for me both personally and professionally. Where was I going to write now? I had no leads for jobs and was once more back in the job market. I still haven’t found a regular office job since then and continue to look every day for the right job for me. Late last year I began my endeavors in freelance writing and worked for one client on writing articles about events and activities in Middletown and another client on a series of articles and lists about erotic poetry. I helped promote his book, The Naked Soul, and my work aided in its success in its category on Amazon.com.
Today I write on a daily basis for my own pleasure and sometimes for my WordPress blog. I write 1000 words a day—sometimes more depending on my mood—while still looking for freelance writing jobs and professional office jobs. I’ve had a couple of job interviews this year but am still frustrated at my inability to be hired for these jobs. What does help is the knowledge that I am a talented writer with skills that I am regularly endorsed for on LinkedIn and that I am continuing to learn new forms of writing on a regular basis.
So do I really consider myself a writer today? I must admit that I am not the prolific writer I once was and no longer aspire to become a successful novelist but I can honestly say that I am indeed a writer. I have an established reputation for good work on Elance and although writing is no longer a consuming passion of mine I do still enjoy the writing that I do daily. I have written some great short stories, poems, and personal reflections this summer and I hope to continue to be a productive writer in the months and years to come.
People often wonder though if they too can become successful writers. I would have to tell them that it is hard work to become a writer and taking writing classes can really help in the long run but it is a worthwhile career to pursue. I would recommend that they look to others for advice on writing and learn from the mistakes that other writers have made. You must realize that writing can become a full-time job—it may not always pay well but it can become something that may eventually bring a good income and a great mental workout.
I chose to become a writer when I was still a child and I hope I never lose this drive of continuing to write. I know that my writing on certain topics can make a difference in the lives of others and can be a model for others to emulate. You have to envision what you want to write about and I’m excited about sharing my perspectives with the world.

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