In high school, I loved writing. I think it may have been a surprise to my English teachers that I didn’t pursue a more wordy profession. But then, I was convinced that the route of forensic pathologist was the way for me. I’m glad that I didn’t continue down that path, but I’ve never forgotten the reactions of my English teachers. The first was when I was a sophomore and applying for a residential public high school for gifted and talented students. I asked my English teacher for a recommendation, and after some consideration, she said that she couldn’t write the recommendation because she felt that it would be harmful to our school to have me leave. I found another teacher to write the recommendation, but her words have always stuck with me. In the last semester of high school, my English teacher (at that residential public high school) said that she knew I’d be a success in the medical community, but that the creative community would be at a loss for it. In a way, both teachers were saying the same thing – it just took me several years to hear it.
I had bumbled along for a while, at a loss for life direction, when I met and married the man who is now my husband. After our first child was born, I was laid off from work. My dad, who has always been in my corner, suggested that I should write during my time away from work. Try writing, he said. So I started a little blog. Now I have blogged online since 2000, but it was more online journal than blog. Back then I didn’t write to offer value to a reader, I wrote to entertain myself and my friends who understood the inside jokes and didn’t tell me that the crappy breakup poetry I wrote was crappy. You know, the friends who stand by you and hope this phase passes quickly. But when my dad suggested that I try writing, I decided to give it a go.
Fast forward 3 years, and I have the beginnings of what could be a successful freelance career. I have a blog that is mildly successful, at least with certain communities, and I have the drive to push myself forward. I study the craft I’m pursuing by gobbling up all the information I can from the library, bookstores, eBooks, and websites like Make a Living Writing. I’ve dabbled in different writing directions since I won my first writing award in the second grade, including poetry, screenplays, prose, memoirs, blogging, online game reviews, and even some creative non-fiction. But in some ways I feel as though I’m a ship without bearings, a compass without a true north, a mom without a mission. I use writing as a creative outlet for myself, but I also enjoy using my skill as an income stream for our family, and I feel that guidance and direction would be a boon not only for my writing goals, but also for my family’s extra income.
From here on out, my goal is to become a professional writer. I want to take this skill and talent of mine and use it to supplement my husband’s income. Because we both feel that it’s important for our family, we’ve made some financial sacrifices in order for me to be a stay at home mom, volunteer, and leader of a local support group for stay at home moms. But we still have dreams that require dinero – like purchasing a home next year, and I would like to monetarily share my appreciation with my husband. My short-term goal is to have a tidy sum, from writing, to use as a down payment on a house. My long-term goal is to put my husband through college with my writing. He was all set to go to college on a football scholarship when he blew his knee out in his senior year of high school, and the change of plans was hard on his dreams. So I’d like to give that back to him. I would also like to show my children how to follow their dreams and that nothing is impossible if you try.
So now that you know why I write and my goals for writing, I’d like to share with you the reason for this particular post. I’m writing it as an entry into a contest that I would absolutely love to win. You see, the grand prize (which goes to 2 winners, so I have a double chance!), includes a year’s subscription to the Freelance Writer’s Den, personal mentoring from the Den Mothers, 2 writing class audits, an e-course, and 4 writing ebooks. On top of all that, there are 3 runner-up prizes that are also totally awesome. The Den has an amazing wealth of information, all about how to get your writing out there, get marketing, and find your freelance success. That is so where I need to be – now that I have my goals, I need to know how to turn my passion into income, and the Den is the way to go. Carol and Linda, I’m pleased that you’ve read my entry, and even if I don’t win, congratulations on the first anniversary of the Den – it’s a fantastic resource and I love hearing about the success of the members!
For more information on the contest, click here. To give me a hand in the running, share this post!