On the first day of Writing 220 class, I remember the feeling of being in way over my head. We were asked to talk a little bit about our favorite books and our favorite authors, and my answer came up short. In all honesty, I am not much of a reader. When I was little, I was more interested in playing outside than sitting down and reading a book. That character trait has stayed with me into college, and I still do not devote much of my leisure time to books. Although reading was never a huge passion of mine, my love for writing has only grown over the years. I get bothered by the fact that there is an assumption that people become writers because they love to read; can’t I become a writer because I just love to write?
After getting home from class that night, I started doing some research about famous authors (embarrassing, I know), in case we were again asked about this topic in a future class. I wanted to be able to fit in and not admit the fact that I don’t devote much, if any of my free time to books. Looking back on this now, I am more mad at my past self for trying to morph into a stereotypical writer and fit in, than I am about the absence of novels on the shelf in my room.
My advice to you, and to my future self is this:
Slow down, and enjoy the ride. Maybe even pick up an ice cream cone just because you can. Let the process happen to you, don’t try to make yourself fit the process. Although ‘you’ as a writer may not fit the mold of your peers or those who have come before you, you were accepted into this minor for a reason. You obviously have talent and a passion for the written word, so don’t let your differences make you feel inferior.
Celebrate the fact that you are different, and if you aren’t much of a reader either, hey, shout it out! Let your writing speak for itself, and enjoy the process of experiencing the minor. The air outside is nice, so roll those windows down and keep on driving.