There will be a lot of first anniversary’s this year. Mine was on Friday, it was on that day 12 months ago, days before a national lockdown for a virus that was running rampage, that I lost my job. I was made redundant and in hindsight it was the best thing that ever happened to me.
At a point in my life where my anxiety was sky high, I was relieved to have been let go from a job I knew I didn’t care too much about. Being reflective on the last year has made me realise, I took the job out of desperation and it was never going to end well, pandemic or not.
I don’t want to talk about everything I’ve been through over the last 12 months. I did, however, want to reflect on how I talk about myself.
When I started blogging five years ago, I would call myself a blogger and it would feel cringe. To me being a blogger meant, collaborations, brands wanting to work with me, being an ‘influencer’ with tens of thousands of followers, just like everyone else. But that went against what I was as a person, it’s probably why I fell out with another influencer because I was trying to be something, deep down, that I wasn’t.
It has taken me 12 months, 3 jobs and numerous mental breakdowns to say out loud, with pride and no shame that, I am a writer.
I write because I’m good at it. I’m not qualified, I did a degree in business studies, but I have a gift. I have a passion for reading and writing and in the turmoil of being a South Asian female blogger, who was chasing followers, I lost my voice.
There are better writers, those with degrees, experience, published authors who will give all sorts of advice on writing, but that’s not me either. Not yet anyway.
Over the course of the last six months, many people have asked me for advice, why? I can only assume it’s because I talk to them about writing like a human with a complex array of emotions. I’m not a robot that tells you to write a certain way because that’s what the internet or publishers want to read.
There is no hard or fast rule. It’s a craft that you hone over time, that’s all I’ve done. It’s what I want to do full-time, for myself and for others.
But for now, write what you have to say, with passion, don’t worry so much about how it looks, if you sound smart or if you make sense. That’s what editing is for.
Write because you have something to say, a story to share in your own style. I spent so long reading articles on how to write that I got lost and forgot to do the one thing I should have been doing.