When I was attending Bethel College in Indiana, I sold my homework. It’s not what you’re thinking—I didn’t sell test answers or term papers out of the trunk of my car—I sold my homework to magazines.
As any student will attest, homework is rather time consuming and as a young married woman returning to school, I was anxious to get started on my writing career. Already, it seemed, I had wasted years of my life in the wrong profession. Now that I was officially calling myself a writer, I really wanted to see my name in print.
It all started with my sociology class (one of those required credits) and our final project. Our assignment was to write a paper and give a presentation on a social issue. I decided to do my project on today’s media and the harmful way they portray beauty to their target audience of young women—stick thin in contrast to past eras— when a size ten was a perfectly desirable shape and ultimately, to the Bible’s portrayal of beauty (never is there a mention of a woman’s dress size) leaving readers to believe it just doesn’t matter.
I received an A on the paper and seemed to hit a nerve with my female classmates at the same time. So I decided to slant my paper towards a teen magazine and submit it for publication. I was thrilled when a national magazine wanted to print my piece. And once the magazine hit the newsstands, the editor began receiving e-mails from girls who were encouraged by my article. I was then asked to write five more articles on the subject!
I have since written countless articles for the teen market, and have even been contacted by editors wanting the re-prints to that original article . . . all because I decided to try and sell my homework.