I remember a time in my life when writing was all I could think about. I like to call this period:
Granted, my degree is in writing and editing, so the central focus of my entire undergraduate career revolved around writing. But, oh, the interesting things I got to write about! I created a new government. I dissected American Gothic literature (which was a labored, but worth-it effort). I wrote about Canada and Japan and how both of those countries have made an indelible mark on my heart. I got to write about, fight about, and talk about cheerleading and it’s validity as a sport. I tore apart my grandmother’s favorite movie and fell even more in love with it by doing so. I even wrote several technical instruction manuals (something I’m very good at, but also find incredibly boring).
I remember when writing for a magazine consumed me and was my ultimate goal. Specifically, I wanted to write for Vanity Fair or The New Yorker. I realize these were (and are) very lofty goals, something so few people will ever get to do, but a girl’s gotta dream, right?
And then I graduated, got my fancy degree, and, well…stopped writing.
Yep. I essentially stopped using the degree I’d worked so hard to get.
I suppose there are plenty of people out there that experience this very same thing. Going to all the trouble of getting the degree and then having to get a job doing something entirely different just to pay the bills. It’s the curse of the floofy liberal arts degree. (To be fair, I have had one job that actually paid me for my writing and it was a ton of fun, even if it was just the one copywriting job…I loved it.)
So, now that I have all this time, I’m trying really hard to set aside parts of my week devoted to writing. I’m reading books on writing (the irony destroys me). And I’m trying to engage my brain more fully, even if that means I’m just having conversations on Facebook about the weird Right, the nutty Left, or idiot clothing CEOs. Whatever it may be, I need to keep my brain from going into atrophy.