From the moment I learned to draw that twenty-sixth letter of the alphabet, I’ve loved to string them all together. Writing and I, we go way back. A tower of journals has hovered in the corner of my bedroom for years. The first one began in second grade. I used to write every day during snack break, until Rebecca, who sat next to me, decided to read the entry about my crush out loud during recess. My journals have stayed home since then.
Soon, my journals were so full that written words starting spilling out everywhere else – birthday cards, songbooks, letters to faraway friends, and eventually, a blog. Writing was clarifying for me. It helped me to sift through my brain until I got to my heart. To read through pages from years past made messy thoughts clear. I understood my heart best once it was scrawled across a page.
So when a book deal came along, it only made sense. Turning thoughts into dollars? I couldn’t have dreamed up this kind of career perfection at age twenty if I’d tried. Those hours staring at blinking cursors and incomplete sentences were wrestlings I’d gladly choose over and over again.
It was only once the manuscript was complete that the cursor turned angry, shouting at me with every blip across my screen. No longer was I penning messy thoughts to bring some clarity to my heart; now I spent my days typing book pitches and blog quotas and marketing emails that made my passion cloudier by the minute. I didn’t care how many people read my words — until people started reading my words. So my stats skyrocketed, and the joy of writing felt further away than ever before.