A Blog Beginning
Making time for writing everyday is important for every writer. It’s also much easier said than done. Speaking as a student, there are often writing projects to complete, but those assignments don’t necessarily cover the more desired topics to write about. How often do I actually write about something that is important to me? Not very. But as I look toward graduating this May, I can foresee the opportunity to both write for the pleasure of writing and read for mere enjoyment.
I’ve been thinking a lot about an article I wrote for Fools Magazine last semester about Carl Klaus, a former instructor at the University of Iowa and life-long writer. His words were very inspiring. In sharing about writing throughout his life, he said that when he was very young, he started a habit of writing a 500-word essay everyday in order to build and maintain his writing life. He also explained that setting that goal for his own personal benefit greatly improved his “eye” for what he could write about every day. The daily habit became easier. As a result, he has written and co-written many books. When I saw him speak last fall, he read from his newest project, Coming of Age: An Octogenarian’s Chronicle, that is still a work-in-progress.
It’s difficult to think about when the last time was that I sat and wrote, just for the sake of writing. During this seemingly endless lock-down of life, I seem to have a little bit of time on my hands. Though Klaus’s advice was to write about whatever memory or incident is most striking for the day, I choose not to let this essay become heavily laden with the woes of the 2020 Covid-19 lock-down. Yes, it occupies much of my mind. We, and I’m speaking for the world here, have no choice but to think about the pandemic currently plaguing our lives. Information about the spreading disease has coated and clogged news headlines and social media passageways in every form. And, while I believe it is important to have concern for those affected and to take precautionary measures, I don’t want it to consume me. So, this is me not writing about it. And this is me rolling my eyes at myself for doing what I said I wouldn’t. Moving on to the point.
This essay is about developing a habit of writing that is based on personal experience rather than assigned writing. I’ve learned so much about trusting my instincts over these past ten years as a student. Writing has turned from something I was already sure I wanted to do into a passion that I know I can’t live without. Time spent earning my degree has helped me realize what type of writing I wish to focus on and pursue – creative nonfiction and literary journalism. I have also become passionate about editing and publishing throughout this journey and have had the privilege of being the Managing Editor of a literary magazine and an anthology of high school writing, as well as an editor of a chapbook that will be published this May.