My role and self-perception of a writer has changed dramatically since entering the gateway class. Firstly, this is represented in that I call myself a writer now. Despite feeling that I was good at writing, I did not see myself as a writer, a term which felt loftier and more self-important. I’ve found however that taking ownership in this term has boosted more accountability in my craft and in my own style. When I use writer as a title, I think of someone who works as a writer as a profession. In that, I have brought a more diligent work ethic to my independent writing. I believe that I can write even when I don’t feel any sense of divine inspiration, and this sense of urgency and purpose has allowed me to write more. Additionally, it’s pushed me to look at platforms where I can showcase my writing more publically, such as my recent application for the NYTimes Edit newsletter, and submitting my flash fiction to Brevity, a magazine catering towards short shorts. In evaluating myself as a writer, it’s led me to use a more authentic voice. I am 20 years old. I enjoy writing for others my age. But now I’ve begun to write as a 20 year old actually would, as opposed to feeling that I have to adopt language to establish my authority. I believe my command over my writing, and my increased willingness to share more personal experiences, has led me to be more credible to a variety of audiences. In this way, while I know to designate certain projects for certain people, I feel that my work becomes more accessible without pursuing relatability at all costs. In short, I feel my writing persona is more assertive and confident, and feels able to take stances and ask more nuanced questions, without being contrived.