How I Became a Writer

Today, I am thrilled to welcome Laura Jane Cassidy, a 23-year-old writer from Co. Kildare, Ireland.  Laura writes supernatural crime for teens and her debut novel, Angel Kiss, will be published by Puffin in 2011.  She blogs about writing, reading and lots of other things on her blog First Three Chapters.  

“A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do.”

Bob Dylan

I didn’t always know I wanted to be a writer, but I did always know I wanted to do something I was passionate about. I longed for a profession that I’d never want to retire from, a job that I’d gladly do even if I wasn’t getting paid for it. I think life is far too short to spend too much of it doing anything other than the things you love with the people you love. And I really do think that if you follow your passion, things will fall into place.

Three and a half years ago I got an idea for a book.  I couldn’t get this idea out of my head, so I started to write. I hadn’t written any fiction since primary school, I hadn’t written anything creative in my teens except for a few terribly embarrassing songs, but this idea seemed like exactly the kind of thing I’d love to read. 

So I decided to give writing a go. I was studying Drama in college, and although I loved acting, I never felt like I truly fitted in the theatrical world. Then I went to my first creative writing workshop, and for the first time in my life I felt like I had found my tribe. Looking around the room at my fellow bespectacled writers, each with a flashy notebook in front of them, it was as if I was looking at reflections of myself. One of the authors talking at the workshop was Sarah Webb, and she was so incredibly inspiring. I had a total ‘I so want to be her’ moment.  I went home from the workshop and literally wrote for the whole summer. 

Writing is an odd sort of profession. It’s exhausting to the point where you want to bang your head against your bookcase, but at the same time it’s completely addictive, something that’s so much fun you can stay up until four in the morning doing, even if you don’t have a deadline. Sometimes I’ll go to bed at night so excited by how a chapter is progressing that I’ll find it difficult to sleep. I always wanted a job that was fun, but I never thought I’d get that lucky.

6 thoughts on “How I Became a Writer

  1. It’s every writer’s dream to get paid for doing what they love to do. And you’re making it happen.

  2. So impressive, Laura and so brilliant that you are following your dream, I have a teen here who will definitely buy your book, good luck with it.

  3. @Theresa; Absolutely and all at only 23 years of age!
    @Laura; Thanks so much for sharing your story on my blog. And I’m with Brigid, Im very much looking forward to reading a copy of your book!

  4. Lovely post! It’s great to see so much passion and optimism! Look forward to reading your book Laura

  5. Wow thanks guys!

  6. “I did always know I wanted to do something I was passionate about” – I completely agree with that sentiment. How wonderful to hear about someone who has held on to that feeling and seen it through. I completely agree about working in an area that you love – Far too many people settle for working in jobs which they detest. Really enjoyed reading this inspiring post!

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