School Daze

This is another prompt from Susan Spann and this week she’s asking about our experiences in school.
Writing has always been one of my passions. When I was in high school, I decided I wanted to become a published author some day. From the third grade, my teachers have complimented me on my skill with the written word. I’d entered several competitions and I was accepted into the Talented and Gifted program at school on the basis of grades and word monkeying.

The other kids in the TAG program weren’t as thrilled as I was. While they built Lego cars with motors and wrote computer programs to make them run, I sat in front of my Mac and penned prose. While they wrote legal documents and played court, I acted as their stenographer. They wanted a break to have a pizza party, I ate from the desk with what I was sure was my first manuscript.

All of my schoolwork was either done in class or at home. When I was in study hall, I was reading the novels my future books would be based on. During one such “research” session, one of the TAG boys, the one who aspired to be class Valedictorian, stopped by my table. He stood over my shoulder, watching as I read a passage and then compared it to my hand-written manuscript. Slowly he leaned over and whispered in my ear, “You know, if you spent as much time on your school work as you do on reading those smut novels you might do better in school.”

My eyes rolled and I stared up at him incredulously. “What?” It wasn’t like my grades were bad. I did fine at school. I didn’t have straight A’s, but that wasn’t what I aimed for, either. I didn’t care I had a B in Algebra. I cared that I had A’s in English and creative writing. I wanted to teach. I wanted to write.

“You should concentrate more on your grades. If you worked more, you’d do better in school.”

“My passion isn’t algebra or science. It’s English and writing. Go away before I get in trouble.”

“You’ll never get anywhere in life with passion and creative writing.”

He wandered away after that, but his words stay with me to this day.  When I’m published, I’ll take my first novel to our class reunion signed to him.

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About Carrie Fulk Vaughn

Carrie Fulk Vaughn (C.V. Madison) is a licensed massage therapist, author of LGBTQIA, Urban fantasy, horror & romance. Gamer geek full of Mountain Dew and schadenfreude pie. Twitter addict. Ball jointed doll collector.

Posted on October 23, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. I relate to this story so much. All my life, people tried to tell me I’d never make a living writing – I should do something more sensible with my time. Fortunately, I also had others who supported and believed in the dream. In one sense, I do make my living writing (though it’s legal contracts that pay the bills these days) – but I’m also now nine months from publication of my first novel, the first in a series no less, and it will be worth all the time and effort to see that book baby in print and on the shelves.

    You’re doing the right thing, refusing to surrender – this isn’t just a dream, it’s who you are, and you’ll get there if you refuse to listen to any naysayers and persevere.

  2. Wow, only nine months to go! Congrats on the first of many!

    My ex used to chastise me for writing. “Why are you doing that? It’s a waste of time. Don’t you have better things to do?” Drove me to stop writing for a long time. I’m really glad I made the decision to get back into it again. It was therapeutic for me.

    It’s also a crime when other “professional” writers tell you you’ll never make it as a writer. Thanks for the vote of confidence, pal!

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