The Day I Decided What I Want to Do With My Life

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So today was a day for a revelation.  I guess it’s been coming for a while but this afternoon, it finally decided to smack me right between the eyes and scream, “Hey!  Pay attention to ME!!!”

I was playing around on the Internet, as I am wont to do, looking at some Percy Jackson fan-art.  I came upon this picture: http://burdge-bug.deviantart.com/art/Light-Outside-246308246, and the song that helped inspire it.  It took me a second, and then my jaw about hit the floor, and only partially due to the awesomeness of the picture.  What really got me was the “Eureka!” moment that went along with it. 

I’ve always been a reader.  I read more than anyone I know (not that I know that many people) and I am never happier than when I’m sitting with a book, lost in another world full of characters and ideas that feel more real to me than most tangible things.  I’ve dabbled a bit in writing: poems, songs, short stories.  I even won a writing contest not too long ago (Pausing a moment for some shameless self-promotion here: http://figment.com/books/417145-IC-75-Sky-Full-of-Diamonds).  I love the feeling I get when I’m working on a story, how images and words that have been stomping around in my head are put out into the world, gaining a life of their own.

And so finally to the realization part. My dad’s always told me that he thinks I’m a writer, and I’ve finally come to the conclusion that he’s right. Looking at that picture and thinking of everything a book can do-how it can create enough emotion to make people write fanfics or draw pictures or make music and generally just bask in its awesomeness-all the little puzzle pieces fell into place. I want to be a writer. I want to inspire the kind of emotion in others that books have always inspired in me, to take people to different worlds and introduce them to all the crazy people living inside my noggin (in a decidedly non-schizophrenic way). And, frankly, I’m afraid my head’s going to burst from all the ideas and scenes in there shouting to be let out if I do anything else.

Now I realize anyone reading this probably knows me and has heard me (or my mother…Hi Mom!) talk all about how I’m going to go into forensic pathology and do the autopsies or get a PhD and teach or something like that. And none of that’s a lie. Not really. I still want to do one of those things (to be determined at a later date), but I want to write, too. And it’s certainly not an impossibility; look at Kathy Reichs, who’s a forensic anthropologist and the author of the book series that inspired the television show “Bones.” And goodness knows that getting published takes a lot of time and effort, and I’m going to need some way to support myself while I work on my writing. So while I plan on getting a third degree and putting in all the years of hard work that either degree would require, I can’t help but stop and recall something: The first thing I remember ever wanting to be when I grew up was an author. And all those people always say to go with your gut, well, who am I to tell them they’re wrong?

And today this is what my gut is telling me: to be an author, to write the words that have been kept inside for so long, and join the world of literature.

A productive afternoon all in all, if I do say so myself.


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