I’m a Writer

“You don’t choose to be an artist, Janine! You just are!”

–Claudia Kishi, The Baby-Sitter’s Club 2020

Hello, world. It’s me, Sarah, and I’m a writer.

Passion and Art

I’m a singer first. In my heart and on my bachelor’s degree. In fact, I’m in the middle of a professional theater acting program. Or, I would be. Will be. . . . . probably. I don’t need to explain the pandemic to you.

I need to follow a passion right now, and please, I beg you, do not ask me if I’ve considered starting a YouTube channel. Yeah, we’ve all considered it. It’s a fine idea, but you are the thousandth person to suggest it, and I’m too tired to explain that it is not the same as singing to a live audience. It’s not my passion.

But I do have a passion for writing.

What do I write?

I published a novel under another name when I was a teenager. Don’t ask. It did not do well. I won’t share it. It’s terrible, and I don’t need it sullying my new career as a writer. Seriously, stop.

So, yes, I like writing novels. I’ve started countless, and finished about three. I’ve also written short stories, a screenplay and an opera and a play and I’m working on a musical.

I used to be an award-winning slam poet. My current job requires me to write grants. Once, I even represented myself in court against an actual lawyer, and I had to write all the legal documents.

I’ve written songs and parodies that I performed with my cabaret troupe.

I’ve dabbled in fan-fiction. I’m almost as ashamed of that as I am of the novel I wrote as a teenager. But, if you truly beg, I might share some.

But now I want to write and pursue it as a career.

What should I write?

To make this my career requires focus and a plan. I can’t do everything all at once. So. With very little research, I’ve decided to pursue novels and articles.

Novels and articles are things I can start writing immediately, even in the middle of a pandemic. Articles can be a good short-term goal and novels are longer-term goals.

And I have a plan!

Well, I have two weeks of a plan and a plan to plan further.

Plan-ception

Week One–Write Every Day.
Anything and everything, with no inner editor. Fanfiction, poems, songs, journals, letters, rants, dreams, lists, character descriptions. . . .

Week Two–Write with intention Every Day.
Specifically, write a short story, two pages or less, each day. This will become an outline for a novel.

Week Three–Outline and Research.
Choose a story to expand into a novel and write outlines for each act. Research how to get started freelancing writing articles. Read books on writing. Plan next steps.

Question

Are you pursuing a passion during the pandemic?

Fine! Stop begging! I’ll do it.

In the next blog post, I will tell you all about the novel I published as a teenager. Just . . . I’m mortified about it, y’all.

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8 Responses to “I’m a Writer”

  1. Hanne Shaye Says:

    Surprisingly, I have done SO MUCH passion planning during this pandemic! I love that you have a creative plan to start writing and keep it anchored in your passion. Amazing! 😀

    Like

  2. Anna Says:

    Sarah, this post is thoroughly delightful. I can not wait to read more of your work and hear more about this oh so enticing novel 🙂

    Like

  3. Sean Gilmore Says:

    I enjoyed reading this. I go through phases of feeling motivated to pursue a passion, but need to work on my follow through. Having plans in place can definitely help with that.

    When I am writing I often deal with a mild form of impostor syndrome. I think, “Who am I kidding? No one would read this/this would never be published.” I am curious if you have ever dealt with those types of feelings and how you combat them.

    Maybe you could make a YouTube video about it. Thanks!

    P.S. That was a joke.
    P.P.S. Is “P.S.” still a thing?
    P.P.P.S. Your feelings on your published novel are clear from this post, but I will never stop being its #1 fan.

    Like

    • SJR Says:

      Thanks, Sean. I am so happy that you read and have a response to my blog.

      Impostor syndrome is a good issue for me to write about. Off the top off my head, one way to combat it is to read the book I wrote when I was sixteen and realize that if this crap got published, your crap can, too.

      Like

  4. Kai Says:

    Yet again I’m blown away, and I’m looking forward to more. I appreciate how I feel as though I am in dialogue with you. Not just in dialogue, but really talking to you.

    Like

    • SJR Says:

      Kai, thank you for reading and commenting. I miss you. I should text you more!

      I’m glad to get feedback that my voice is coming through. I wonder what people who don’t know what I talk like are getting?

      Like

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