“I never knew that you enjoy writing.” My mother keeps telling me this for the last 4–5 years every time I mention that I write any content. It could have been explained that she did not if we haven’t had such a close relationship that we actually have. So how could my mother, that I am close with, not know that I enjoy writing?
Let’s rewind a bit to my childhood. My older sister has always loved reading, or at least it seemed like it to me. Being the younger sister, I wanted to be as cool as she was (because that is how I saw her). So I also tried to read, and most of the time, our parents would give me the books my sister liked. As you can see, I “tried to read” and not actually did it. I got bored, so bored, and so fast that I would just fall asleep right there with the book in my hands. Needless to say, that my parents couldn’t get me to read a lot, and I did fail to be as cool as my sister and read as much as she did.
The years have passed, but I still struggled to find those rare books that caught my interest enough to finish them. However, my ambition to be a good student motivated me to read at least some books from the school program to follow the class discussion and get good grades. Closer to graduation, the books were getting harder but more interesting for me, and to this moment, some of my favorite books are from that period of my life.
In Russian schools, we not only read a lot, but we also write so many reviews on the books that at some point, we would write at least 1 essay for each book, and there would be at least ten books a year. So with easy math, we can see that every year there was a minimum of 10 essays. And that was only at the literature class. So by graduation from school, I’ve probably written at least over 30 essays in the last 3 years. So the logical conclusion would be that the insane amount of essay writing at school led me to start writing for myself.
I do think the school had the writing influence on me, but it was not the moment when I fell in love with it. After school, I’ve started my bachelor’s in the Netherlands. That was the first challenge. Although I was quite fluent in English, I haven’t written nice good looking creative texts not based on the template formats for exams. I was more than managing the academic writing for the university, but I still wanted more, more creative, and less academic. How lucky was I that one of the courses was with a guest lecturer who turned out to be a content writer? She was exactly who I needed, and she taught me what I wanted. This was the next boost after high school that I needed to write more.
Are you still following? I have two more boosts I want to tell you about. I’ll try to be concise. One of the biggest boosts in my writing passion was definitely the course I took during my exchange in Scotland: Arts & Entertainment Journalism. During this class, the homework, and assignments, I got to be as creative as possible and actually learn how to write creative content. Watching a movie and writing a review as an assignment — what else could I have wished for?
So now I had lots of knowledge that I needed to write. Next, I needed to find a way to practice. Luckily for me, I found the internship and now a job where writing content was a huge part of my responsibilities. However, there was one nuance: the content I was writing was extremely technical. On one side, it was definitely limiting my creativity, but at the same time, I had to keep finding the creative and non-boring ways of writing about quite some boring and technical stuff.
We now went through all the important parts of my writing process. And the pattern is quite visible: I kept finding a way to write. Then how did my mother not know that I like to write? Throughout all these stages, she knew that I was choosing to write again and again. And she kept telling me: “You never liked reading. I could never predict that you will be writing.”
I still don’t really like reading, but I love writing more and more every time I do it. So I say our passions should not be dependent on each other but dependent on us.