When I first applied to the Odyssey, I didn’t really know much about it. There were articles being shared around Facebook with a pretty common theme among them: lists relating to roommates, funny lists with gifs or deep open letters to “lost loves.” I never had a space where I could publicly share my thoughts (if Twitter doesn’t count) with people I know closely or don’t know very much at all (the beauty of Facebook). That concept was so new to me and still is. But, it is kind of empowering. The Internet can do what it pleases with my writing and can get to know how I feel on a variety of topics.
I’ve had a couple of people message me privately after I’ve posted an article, saying how much they relate to what I wrote. That truly makes me so happy. Even if one person comments saying “I love this!!!” I feel like I did something right. Other times, some people just need to hear that they aren’t alone in whatever situation they find themselves to be in. I think that’s what everyone needs every once in a while.
Two people messaged me on other social media relating to articles I’ve written and I didn’t even know them! That is crazy and so incredible. People I don’t know are reading what I write and care enough to reach out and tell me that they love it.
However, that doesn’t mean that everyone is pleased about what I’ve written. I’ve definitely had people unfriend me on Facebook or trash talk me somewhere. That won’t stop me though. As long as I get a reaction in some sense, I feel accomplished.
Some of my articles do better than others (could be my fault for not sharing them aggressively on every social media site…) and others I don't expect to be shared as much as they are. One week I received the top article spot for something I’m truly and completely passionate about – women’s education. That also may have something to do with the fact that the organization posted it on their Facebook page, something I’m still so happy/shocked/amazed about--more people should know about how important a girl’s education is!
I know that The Odyssey has gotten quite a bit of flak and has a sort of bad name associated with it, partially because a lot of readers or Facebook users don’t take it seriously. I consider that to be a funny thing, since this is a platform posting real news stories and real content. I wrote an article about how Odyssey writers write whatever they want because we don’t care. We want to share our opinions, our feelings, our perspectives of the world. Isn’t that what social media is about? Sure a lot of the articles that get big numbers of shares are about college roommates and open letters to moms, but isn’t that important too?
I can’t believe I’ve stuck with The Odyssey for a whole year. It hasn’t been easy (I’d classify myself as a “quitter”) especially when a new article comes out every week and it doesn’t stop in the summer. I’m also happy to say that I am now a Contributing Editor in Boston University’s community – something I’m definitely super excited about. I can’t wait to see what the next year brings in terms of life, writing and those that read these silly things every week. Thank you for sharing and reading – it really does mean a lot to me.