if I grow up …

“What I have wanted to be when I grow up…

this of course assumes that i will someday grow up. here’s a cool quote:

Another belief of mine:
that everyone else my age is an adult,
whereas I am merely in disguise.
-Margaret Atwood

my thoughts exactly. but anyway…

i remember when i was little, let’s see, musta been 5 or 6, wanting to be an astronaut, but then Challenger blew up and i was frankly scared out of it. no five year old wants to face death like that, i suppose.

when i was very young, again, probably around that age, maybe up to 7 or 8, i wanted to be either a singer, because i really liked to sing, or else a veterinarian because i liked animals. simple, straightforward, y’know, you like it, you do it, that’s it. i still like animals, and i still love to sing, but never in a million years could i face med school, and i doubt if professional singing is for me. maybe just a little bit, with a harp. 🙂

but i always loved to read, with a passion. and in fifth grade i think, definitely in sixth, i decided i wanted to be a writer. i believe it was fifth grade (or else the beginning of sixth) when Cynthia Voigt, an excellent young adult writer, came to speak to our class in Berlin, Germany. she was a funny lady, and i read her books and loved them (still do). at the end of sixth grade, in Virginia, another writer (a woman, i don’t remember her name or what she wrote) came to talk to us during a career week, and that’s when i started seriously on a notebook of ideas, what-ifs, etc. and started (or possibly continued?) writing a story about unicorns that ended up being about 60 pages long before i stopped working on it. sadly, it was a terrible, unintentionally plagiaristic rip-off of a very good young-adult fantasy novel called Birth of the Firebringer, by Meredith Ann Pierce. which i reccommend, by the way. i didn’t MEAN to rip it off so badly, but i was very inspired and then couldn’t find the book to read it again for at least two or three years, and in the meantime the story was awfully similar. ah well. i wanted to be a writer initially because i love to read, because i wanted to make stories that would make people feel the way i do when i read a really awesome book–fluttery and excited inside, deeply satisfied, and yet wishing that it hadn’t ended. now i want to be a writer for that reason, but also others. self-expression, capturing my view of the world, the joy of the craft itself, a limited sense of fame, sanity’s sake, and above all i think, in the hopes that people will read what i write and recognize themselves in it, the way i have read others and done the same. i have always felt like something of a freak, and though i have mostly come to terms with this fact, i still somehow feel that if others can identify with what i write, it will prove that i’m not such a freak after all, that i can have the connection and community i crave, secretly, deeply, desperately.

so that’s pretty much it. i still want to be a writer, i came to school wanting to be an English major and have never changed it. i’m not exactly clear on most of the specifics of the trade, as a trade, but honestly, i feel i have to have some publishable quality work before i can worry about trying to publish it. maybe i’ll just marry a crusty old millionaire and write in some garrett in a dusty old house surrounded by apple orchards. nice.

or not. no matter which way it goes, i WILL write, dangit. if only to show some of my friends, like B*** for instance, that i can and will. even though he’ll just smirk and congratulate me and say that he knew all along i could do it, and forget he was ever smarmy and condescending. even though i know he mainly does it to piss me off and get me motivated. the bum. screw them all! join the resistance! fight the revolution! yeah! or something.

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