Ever meet someone that thought your “writing” was a waste of time? I have. Several times. Occasionally, when people ask me what I’m doing now, and I tell them that I’m a writer, they get this confused, unsure look in their eye. They don’t understand what that means. It’s not a technical program with an immediate career like Nursing or Underwater Welding or Teaching.
People assume that this means “unemployed.” People assume that when people go to college, they go to college for a specific purpose; they have a job in mind upon graduation; their major and their job title will share words. In people’s mind, they think of programs like nursing or engineering, after which the student becomes a nurse, or an engineer. When I told people I was studying English, they did that confused look, and then asked, “You’re going to teach?”
Because apparently, that’s the only thing English majors can do.
I might teach, but I might not. It’s up in the air.
Unless you’re well-known, people don’t understand what being a “writer” is. I’ve met some people (*cough* ex-boyfriends *cough*) who think it’s a waste of time. It’s just a hobby to them, like reading a book or playing a game. They don’t write, so they don’t understand. Unless you’re making money, people don’t take you seriously, and it’s irritating. Trust me. I know.
It feels like people think you’re a joke. You’re just another kid singing on YouTube trying to be famous. You’re “just another” wannabe, and they don’t think you’ll get anywhere, so you’d better buckle down and start worrying about “real life,” and get a real job. They want you to get your head out of the clouds, because they have no clouds to surround themselves with.
Because, apparently, the only thing women are good for is popping out babies, cooking, and going to church to talk about the women who fail at one or more of these things.
People also are very concerned with my lack of children. A few people from my high school class now have four or five kids (they started early). I am single and childless – so what’s wrong with me?
Nothing is wrong with me. I haven’t met anyone I like well enough, and I’m not the mother type. Get over it. It’s my life, stop worrying about it. Life is hard enough without people gripping at me about what I’m doing or not doing.
If you want to be a writer, or anything, go be that thing you want to be. Don’t let people tell you that you’re not good enough, or that you won’t make it, or that you should be worrying about something else. Don’t worry about what other people are going to think or say; they don’t matter. You matter.
Go forth and follow your dreams and live them. Then go to the next high school reunion and rub your dreams in their faces.