“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.
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.
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.