As utterly fascinating as my recent blog posts about female genitalia, homesickness and self-disgust aren’t, I see my career as a writer disintegrate with every good news article I read. It must be a common irritation, that of the words in your head not matching the words you’ve just written down. I have always considered myself a talented writer simply because no one ever told me otherwise. The inflated ego of an...ok writer now hovers, punctured, maybe just a tinge higher than those possessed by everyone else who isn’t a writer. (Just remember, never insult egomaniacs by name on your blog, cause they google their name more frequently than I check my email.)
I’m beginning to think that I lie somewhere on that middle ground between mediocre and talented. I am not capable of possessing a devil-may-care attitude about the public reception of my writing because it is journalism; I chose this livelihood, major and hobby and therefore must begin giving a fuck where I never before had even the smallest fuck to give. (I just read a coworker’s really goddamn intelligent blog so I’m going to be extra flowery now in my jealousy while the ego balloon above my head goes WHOOSH.)
I have to be sellable. I have to be current. I have to follow modern linguistic trends. When really, I am personally content when I write something that doesn’t elicit bile rising up from my stomach on a second read. I find myself getting vag deep in journalistic dos and don’ts that make me realize I have signed up for a future that I knew nothing about. To enumerate on this, as the editor of my high school paper, I did not utilize the AP Stylebook nor was I aware of its existence. And now I am purportedly an authority on it, being that I am a news editor. (Lauren, are you ready to fire me yet?) Layout and design was a whole other wild goose chase with me being the chaser and doohicky little InDesign techniques being the quacker.
Being that this news editor job is the primary focus in my life, I often think about what I could’ve done better in my past year and a half with the paper. All the nonsense that has accumulated in my time here boils down to my lack of professionalism. Taken in by the (fame, fortune and gilded gold slave-men attendants?) of this paper initially, I probably made some unwise personal choices that I can only attribute to youthful stupidity, my overriding desire to be liked by all these older people and my not-so-secret love of the controversial. If I’ve learned anything this year, it’s that I want to be seen as an ambiguous coworker who does not have a mouth that enters the room before she does. (It still does.)