I’ve had a really crazy week this week. In case you don’t know, I graduated from NC State University just a couple of weeks ago, with a degree in English and a concentration in Creative Writing. For a few months now, I’ve been looking for a full-time job, with no success. Yes, I know, these things take time. But sending application after application out into the void with no response can be pretty discouraging. You know, kind of like sending out manuscript after manuscript, trying to get published.
A few days ago, after walking away from an interview where I felt my skills were not considered important, I was beginning to doubt myself. “Why does no one value good writing skills and people skills, or research and analytical skills,” I started wondering. “Why is my excellent GPA written off simply because I majored in English?” I even started doubting if I was actually any good at what I do, if I have any skills to offer, or anything worthwhile to contribute. I knew I’d hit a low when I started asking myself “Why did I major in English?”
Two days after my failed interview, I got an email that I didn’t get the job. My boyfriend took me out to try and cheer me up, and when I got home, I checked my email again, as I habitually do. There, waiting for me in my inbox, was an acceptance letter for my latest fantasy story.
Just last week, my boyfriend had been teasing me about how, now that I’ve graduated, I must be a Real Writer. I’d pointed out that Real Writers were not writers who were struggling to break into publishing. But one week later, on the very day that I needed the most encouragement, there was an acceptance letter waiting for me, saying “We love what you do,” rewarding me for the months I’d spent sending my story out into the void. Thank you, Shimmer Magazine. Today, I feel like a Real Writer.