Tuesday, May 29, 2012

What do you want to be when you grow up?

I finished reading Zoe Winters' "Smart Self-Publishing: Becoming an Indie Author" today. I found it fascinating and I feel like things will really start to happen with me. It's what I've wanted since I was nine years old, to be a writer, working for myself. It's always been the dream that has never left my side. More than acting, more than music (though I hope to always be taking voice lessons). If you couldn't tell, I'm a bit artsy. Not the zany-crazy Fame/Glee artsy, but artsy in my own way.

Anyway, in one of her anecdotes, she talked about spending her class time in high school writing, rather than listening to her teachers. I relate. When I was seventeen, I was having the hardest time in the world with algebra. I was always a math whiz until high school. For some reason, algebra and geometry escaped me. My junior year, right after winter break, I returned to school only to have my algebra 2 teacher tell me that no matter how hard I could work, I wouldn't pass the rest of the term.

She's the teacher. She knew everything, right? For the rest of the year, I sat in the back of her class, writing stories. The following year, with a new teacher, I got an A all year. Figure that one out.

The following year, I had a free period, and rather than do the smart thing and TAKE said free period, I chose to take "Senior Survival." Biggest waste of time in the entire world. I mean, sure. Some people would probably do well in a class like that, which explained how to find a job, do your taxes, write a resume. I'd been working steadily since I was fifteen, my dad worked at H&R Block during tax season and I'd practiced resume writing for kicks. Our last assignment of the year was to interview someone that did a job you wanted when you "grew up." Seeing as how I didn't know any novelists/screenwriters, and no one from the newspaper got back to me for an interview, I wrote a paper on what I wanted to be and how I figured I could get there. I even outlined why I didn't get an interview. Guess whose teacher got pissy? Apparently, you'll never get a job if you don't interview someone in a menial position on how they get through the day.

When you live in a podunk town where writers tend to be journalists who don't return emails, you do whatever you can, and it was time to put the desire to be a writer to good use. I invented someone.

What I'm basically saying here is not to let anyone tell you what you can or can't do. I knew I wanted to be either a writer or actress and I have always known that anything less would not make me happy. My adult life has further cemented that fact. It's taken a bit of time, but I've decided that I will be a professional, freelance writer, with my book(s) and potential articles or whatever as my sole source of income in five years or less.

On that note, I have a surprise. I've decided to show my book cover, designed by my former Stephens College classmate, Lindsay Shoemaker. Solidarity, Stephens Sister! (You can visit Lindsay's website at http://www.lindsay-a-shoemaker.com/)

Meet Riley Pembroke (Sugar) and Stella Gainsbourg (Spy)
Stepsisters and Best Friends


  1. Love the cover! And great ambition. I'm the other way around- I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life for years.

    1. Thanks! I know a lot of people that still don't know. I know I doubted myself for years, but I kept coming back to writing.

  2. Yes!! I am so excited for you! Love the cover!! :) Glad that you found an artist!!!