Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Yeah, But I'm Just a Kid

I have always been a little non committal to my writing. It's not something I'm really open to. When people started asking me if I wanted to be a writer "when I grew up", I was non committal. Was I interested in publishing one day? I don't know. I haven't thought about it. Probably not.

It wasn't that I didn't enjoy writing. It wasn't that I didn't want others to read it (I just don't want questions about why this, why that). It wasn't that I was worried about people liking what I wrote.

It was my age.

I wrote my first, full length draft of a novel when I was 14. I've churned out a manuscript every year since, no matter how busy I am. I've never edited beyond a second draft. I've never thought to take a manuscript that far.

Because, subconsciously, I was thinking I'm too young to be published. I'm too young to lay claim to "writer". I'm too young to be considered. A 15 year old does not decide they want to be traditionally published. Sure, some teenagers get published, but they are crazy talented.

Now I'm 18, I'm at university, and I'm studying maths and science, rather than english or media. I'm working on poetry, rather than a novel. It's a project I'm pretty serious about. I was thinking about why I wouldn't consider taking it further, when I realised that it was because in my head, I was still 15.

I was still asking about my place it the world. I was still waiting for someone to point me in the right direction. I was still waiting for someone to say "you're old enough to go for what you want now" or "you're now old enough for people to take you seriously".

1 Timothy 4:12 says "don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity." Basically, your age shouldn't be an excuse for anything. You should be able to set an example to others around you, no matter how old you are. You should be able to go after what you want.

This year, I'm working harder at going after what I want. I'm working to understand that I have my own place in the world. I'm working hard to realise that my age shouldn't have anything to do with how I behave and make decisions.

Has your age ever stopped you from going after something? Do you ever worry about not being old enough to want something? Has your age ever effected how seriously you take your writing?
Opal is also working harder to grab opportunities as soon as they come around. 


  1. Oh yeah, I know the feeling. You go, girl.

  2. This is such a good reminder <3 You go, Opal!

  3. What?! You are incredible - a manuscript every year! I hope you find the courage to do what you want to do with your writing.

  4. I have never agreed more wholeheartedly with anything. Age is not restrictive but we think it is. I used to think it was. I found myself thinking I couldn't possibly do the things I love because I simply wasn't old enough to participate. But you're absolutely right - it's no excuse. :)

  5. 100% agree with this! It's still kind of hard to get used to accepting the fact that despite me not being an adult yet, I don't have to conform and save 'adult' things, such as how people view writing a book as something only adults do, for later. I know lots of people around me see it as something I shouldn't be doing, that I should focus on growing up, but my entire childhood was basically built on writing, so why not make my teenage years all about writing as well?

    - Andrea at A Surge of Thunder