Why Being a Writer Is So Scary

I've recently turned twenty-three, which is closer to 25 than it is to 20. I’m currently in my last semester before my [delayed] graduation. I’ve also recently entered a new relationship. A lot of things in my world are changing in a whirlwind right in front of me, but luckily a few of them are staying exactly the same, like my fixation on becoming a writer; But not just any kind of writer, a real one.

I’ve always been good at putting things into words. Whether it be writing short stories for reading class in elementary, coming up with a brilliantly believable excuse for being late to work or telling my friends about last weekend in such vivid detail that they can almost picture being there. It wasn’t until high school, when I picked up my first John Green novel, that I decided I wanted to do it for a living.

I’ve been working at it for a few years now. A few short stories for creative writing class turned into an almost-novel that was later thrown into the garbage, some free freelance work for an alternative music magazine, and a few half-hearted articles for the school paper here and there. It wasn’t until my junior year that I realized if I wanted to be a writer so bad that I had to find something I loved to write about, or I was doomed, so I started a blog. I started off slow writing every once in awhile about how lost I was, my devastation from a break-up *eyeroll*, and some other sad bullsh*it, and it still wasn’t fulfilling; but then, eventually, I found my niche. I began writing about doing the things I love with the people I love and I poured my heart and soul into it. I wrote about how I was finally coming to terms with the confusion of life and how excited I was for it. I would pour all my energy into thousands of words and created pieces that I loved -- pieces that I wanted to share with the world.

I recently hit a bout of writer’s block. I’ve spent weeks in a haze trying to figure out how I was going to create a lifestyle out of all of this when I can’t even come up with a few things to say for my website. Then the thought of “what if I wind up settling for a nine to five that I hate. I have to pay the bills,” creeped into my head. Then I thought if I can be a writer, then anyone can.

I spent the last few weeks questioning if I’ve been on the right path, if I’ve gotten the right education and if being a writer was really what I want to do. After a few glasses of wine and some soul-searching, I’ve come to the conclusion that I am a writer. I have a way with words, in such a way that I can reach out to people. I have the power to create and the power to change. I may not be J. K. Rowling, I may not have a million blog followers [yet], but I do have something -- and I can get there if I work my ass off.

It wasn’t until now, sitting at my local Starbucks blasting "Believe" by Mumford + Son’s way too loud in my headphones, that I am realizing it’s the passion behind your words that will get you there. Being a writer is really scary. Anyone has the ability to write a thought on a page and put their name on the byline but not everyone has the heart to do it, and do it well. So if you too are worried about if you’re going to make it as a writer one day, just make sure you stay smart and keep that fire in your eyes. I promise you, we’ll be alright.

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