For some the escape can be negative. For example, some kids physically escape. They run away. They always stay at a friend’s house. They run the streets. Other kids emotionally escape into drugs, alcohol, eating disorders, inappropriate relationships.
And then for others the escape can be positive. For example, participating in an organized sport, theatre, dance, singing, academics, books. My escape from planet crazy was definitely reading. I read books voraciously. I loved them so much that I decided that I would write my own stories at a very young age. I must have been in about fifth grade or so. I would write my stories and a secretary (Ms. Regina) who worked at my mother’s office would type them up for me. I felt official:)
Fast forward to when I was a senior in high school. I told my parents that I was going to major in English in school because I wanted to be a writer. They had always known that I loved to write and that I excelled at it, so I didn’t think it would be a big surprise to them. My mother wasn’t surprised but she sure didn’t agree with my decision. She wanted me to major in something that I could “make a living at”. In fact, she made it quite clear that she was not paying for school unless I decided on another major.
I majored in print journalism in undergraduate school – paid for by my parents. So as you can imagine that began a slippery slope of internships, jobs, in the journalism field. An industry that I was not cut out for at all. I managed to land a few entry level jobs at some of the biggest names in the industry and quickly realized that I loved to read and write as an escape, but not to report the nitty gritty realities of life.
For example, I was sent on an assignment when President Clinton first got elected (yes, I’m showing my age:) by the NYT to interview any students who would talk about how they felt about little Chelsea Clinton joining their school. No press pass. Nothing. I just had to walk uninvited on an elementary private school campus and get the story. That was so not my personality. I knew right then and there that the industry was not for me.
I found a lot of reasons not to write after that. I moved to New York and started working in magazine publishing. Too busy. All my friends were working in the music industry at the time, so back then I was also partying too much. Not too long after that I was engaged, then married, then pregnant, and then pregnant two more times after that! Still no writing. In fact, I had abandoned reading for a few of those years because I was seriously distracted with all the babies running around my house!
I gave birth to my three daughters within a four year time span and soon fell back in love with reading because once again it provided me with a wonderful escape from the stressors of my life. I also became well aware of the revolution going on in publishing. One of my favorite genres “supernatural YA fiction” was rising to the top with the publishing of the Twilight Trilogy. Amazon created the Kindle which I thought was amazing, although I think the Kindle App on an iPad is even better:) The decision to write was becoming easier to make.
Fast forward to today– I am a business/marketing & writing coach who specializes in content marketing, but if I’m perfectly honestly with myself I would much rather be a full time fiction author. So here I am on this site. Making the decision to write. Making the decision to publish. Facing my fears of what all of that means and assuring myself that by this time next year (January 7, 2014) I will be a full-time published author.
I invite you to keep an eye on me and keep me accountable during this journey!