Writers keep history, shape cultures, and evoke empathy. Some of those writers try to focus on releasing tension from their reality more than earning compensation for their words. Some elite writers share their ideas of history, culture, and empathy while receiving livable wages, yet I’m proud of all the writers.
I’ve had success these few months rewriting a novel series from seventh grade. I haven’t posted while writing them, but I haven’t been procrastinating with my blogs. At least, I choose not to say I was procrastinating, but you may understandably differ in opinion. I say I’ve focused on other matters of importance.
One of the blocks that kept me from posting a blog recently was my worry of not eloquently and effectively communicating on the matters at hand. Major events happened in January, and I’ve processed them privately in drafts of blogs. Thankfully, I was able to scrape out this one.
I have the tools to craft such writing, but my confidence has been dwindling with the anxiety of what’s happening in America and my own reality. Reporting on special events, current events, is stressful. I was a stringer (a part-time reporter) for a summer, and I began to fall in love with a massive county and providing details on current events.
While I grew up, there was a stigma about Perry County from some of the kids of my hometown and other scattered around the county. If the kids voice the stigma, then a parent or older sibling somewhere must have a similar idea (unless the kid misunderstood). The stigma was baseless, simply off prejudice, stereotypes, and a small number of bad eggs.
I grew out of this stigma with age, distance, and gradual maturity. We joked in the office of The Perry County Times about these strange prejudices. Some Perry County citizens turn their nose up to anyone not from their county or who wasn’t born in it, but that’s not every citizen’s opinion. It was interesting to interact with an exclusive community that was open to me thanks to the newspaper, and I feel the paper brings a sense of community to the county.
I began to admire the county that was tarnished on baseless stigma in my past. My first interviews were with two high schoolers, and they were brilliant, witty, and insightful. I met a librarian, who wrote her own unpublished novels, and a poet, who published his third chapbook Many Phases. These interviewees connected me to the county, and the latter two showed me to persevere.
I’m uncertain if it’s generational ideology or immaturity, but I grew up believing someday I’d make a career out of my writing—my own ideas, leads, and writing fueling my days. The capitalist 9 to 5 hours went out of style, in my opinion, and they don’t leave much time for ourselves or community.
In retrospect, I’d work more than eight hours a day if writing was my career, like farmers; they call it a lifestyle, not a job. They spend endless hours tending their animals, land, equipment, and produce. Yet they genuinely enjoy it. I want to immerse myself in the writing lifestyle, and I wish people who wanted those lifestyles could attain them more easily on a livable wage.
The pressures of capitalist career and writing tack onto the growing list of things that are conflicting in my mind. Moving out of this country or only earning income by writing are out of the question currently, so, I suppose, to find peace I must compromise.
Compromise isn’t easily acquired, even in the self, especially with two severely contrasting topics. Perhaps I can learn more about events, culture, and empathy with a 9 to 5, and I can write about it periodically throughout the day (or at least jot down some notes).
Successfully serving each pressure to an agreeable compromise is possible because I did it while in school, but I didn’t have the responsibilities I do now or the ones to come soon.
Being 23 is perplexing. I’m still torn between childhood and adulthood. My present self reflects on those two factors and compromises between where I was and where I want to be. I suspect perplexity goes on through life with the compilations of past and future, and I wonder if the severity of confusion increases with age.
Compromises reverberate through experiences, minds, and actions the longer I think about it. Most likely, we feel obligated to compromise our time for someone else or something else. That’s what we do as a community, as a human race.
If we’re all perplexed one way, age, or another, then we can all find connections, empathy, through our experiences, histories, and our minds and actions, cultures. With these connections in mind, I believe peace is tangible. With all that’s happened in 2020 and January of 2021, I seek connections, compromises, and concord for America.