I love writing, it is my favorite thing to do. Something about being able to tell stories, express myself, and formulate sentences and paragraphs that are appealing to the ear leaves me with a sense of reverence and euphoria when accomplished. I have been writing all my life and when it came to picking a college and major I decided to go with just that. Little did I know, however, that this decision would lead to an endless supply of questions, jokes about how easy my major is, and unfounded judgments about writing as an occupation. These all lead to uncertainty from others and within myself as to whether I have made the right decision.
1.) A Writing major not easy.
Yes, we all know how to write and all are forced to read and write well by our parents and teachers. We start writing at a young age and it’s one thing we all will have to do in the future, but that doesn’t mean it is a skill in which everyone is adept. The ability to convey complex ideas clearly, thoughtfully, and eloquently is a skill easy to pick up but extremely difficult to master. There is a lot more to writing than having correct grammar and varied vocabulary. It takes patience, the willingness to improve, and versatility
2.) Yes, there are jobs
Journalism, creative writing, communications, writing for companies, editing, or composition are all jobs that a writing major can fill. Stop acting like I have one option with my major. Novel writing is not the only option for me. Is it the ideal outcome, yes, but I recognize the unlikeliness of this.
3.) Practice is key
It is imperative that writing majors keep writing, evolving and developing their craft. There is no room to settle for less. It is about trying different things, broadening horizons, and improving with each word written. As you grow, things become more complicated and it becomes an endless quest to balance directness with convolution and smoothness with abruptness. Any day I go without writing I feel unaccomplished and as if I have failed.
4.) Always someone better
No matter how hard you work, there will always be someone better. Someone will always be better than you at certain things, and when you read someone else’s work jealousy takes over. You wish you would have written like that. Looking at my heroes, I am nowhere close to them. No matter how hard you try, you will never write melancholy like Hemmingway, lore like Tolkien, or as much as King.
5.) It is an inconsistent skill.
My opinion of my own writing is inconsistent. Sometimes I love what I write, sometimes I couldn’t be more disgusted. For instance, this article I am writing right now, I hate it, but who knows, maybe tomorrow I won’t. I guess that just explains writing for me, It is an endlessly frustrating process. For now, I will continue to improve and evolve as I myself improve and evolve with age.