Okay – it’s official, so I can talk about it. I gave notice at the Elk Rapids News that I will no longer take assignments after the end of this year.
This wasn’t an easy decision to make, and I’ve actually postponed it a few time. While I enjoy the opportunities I’ve had to cover government and school meetings, my heart isn’t in journalism. I like to tell stories.
I also think it’s time to expand my coverage. Don’t get me wrong. I love the people of Elk Rapids (obviously…I live there), but it’s a small paper with a small circulation. While it has been an amazing way to start my freelance career, it’s not a place where I can expand. I don’t mean this at all to sound condescending, but the truth is if I want to make a career of writing, I have to find some larger markets with some larger paychecks.
And as my passion is fiction, I need to make more time for my manuscripts. My hope is that as I find higher paying markets for my articles, I can write fewer articles and more manuscripts (or I’ll just make more money…either option works for me).
I know this sounds greedy, but it’s more than that. It’s a challenge. I could very easily spend the next five years writing for the Elk Rapids News and never step outside of my comfort zone, but it’s hard to grow there. That’s the thing with comfort zones – they’re nothing more than self-made boxes that keep the unknown out, but they also keep us stuck inside. I don’t want to limit my writing to where I feel comfortable. I want to push myself to write as many things in as many ways as I feel called.
And so I’ve taken a step away from the Elk Rapids News, the place that not only gave me a chance to start writing, but also gave me the confidence to keep going. I will be forever grateful to the paper that let me learn and grow as I wrote. It took a lot of thought, prayer, and courage to make this move, but I’m glad that I did. I’m excited to see what happens next…
QUESTION: What courageous step have you had to take for the sake of your writing?