Today is April 8, 2020. I am exactly one month into turning 22. In 11 months, I will be 23. By age 23, I hope to have written something, whether it’s a short story, memoir, or novel.
Besides it being my one-month anniversary of being 22 years old, today was also the start of my journey into reading. I have not read much, if at all, in the past… oh, I dunno, 4 years?? I was so busy with earning my degree in psychology, I barely had time to crack open a novel, short story, or even an essay! It was all just research papers and the like. Dry, boring stuff. Nearly snuffed out the creative light within me. Thankfully I continued to write all throughout college, so at least my writing chops haven’t withered too much.
I am on a quest to become the greatest writer I can be. Notice that my goal isn’t, “Oh, I want to be a NY Times Bestselling author one day.” Honestly, if that miraculously happens, how wonderful it would be. But that’s really not what I care about. Up until now, I didn’t really take my writing seriously. I was a casual blogger with a small following who simply wrote for writing’s sake. I couldn’t not write. It was my primary way of expressing myself, especially because I am such an introverted person. With the start of the quarantine, however, I have had a lot more time to reflect and turn the mirror inward. And I realized something: I wanted to do something more with my writing. Not just write for myself and be pleasantly surprised if someone along the way happened to praise my work. What if… what if I wrote deliberately and with purpose? Truly apply myself to the craft, the same way I applied myself to gymnastics, and the same way I applied myself in my studies. I’ve proven to myself that I can succeed at anything, if I focus. I am smart, a quick learner, and oh-so passionate. So if I wanted to become a writer, I think I could. Heck, maybe I already am a writer, and I just didn’t realize it until now.
After reading numerous articles online about advice for aspiring writers, the general consensus is this: write a lot, and READ a lot. A good writer is a great reader. So, for the next 11 months, I will make it a daily habit to read. Voraciously. Novels. Short stories. Essays. Memoirs. Newspapers. Magazines. Everything I can get my hands on. This is my training to becoming a seasoned writer. I am so, so excited to see what worlds I’ll discover along the way.