September 6, 2017

Too Young? On Age and Writing

     

   Am I too young? That thought hasn't haunted me in a long time. In recent years, I have become less self-conscious about a lot of things, my age was one of them. I realized that age was just a number, and that it didn't define me.

   Sure, I know there are some things that rely on my age.

I can't drive until I'm sixteen.
It will always be hard to find work until I'm sixteen or seventeen.
I can't marry until eighteen, unless my parents sign papers or something, (not that I plan on being a teen bride or anything, goodness, no!)
I can't legally move out until I'm eighteen.
I can't drink until I'm twenty-one.

The list obviously goes on.

   But I don't let my age define me as a person in general. I do what I like, and I like what I do.

   However, even though I haven't let my age determine the stuff I am passionate about in a long time, this week a doubt crept into my mind; what if I'm not old enough?

    The book I'm currently working on has some darker themes, I won't lie. It deals with many topics and issues. It's been pretty amazing to write and plot, because I am really stepping out of my comfort zone, and I feel like this book is going to be a big step towards my hopefully future career as a full-time authoress.

     The problem is that my topics are what some people would consider more “grownup”. Stuff that a fourteen year old girl shouldn't worry about, fight against, or even know about in some cases.

     My mom is 100% behind me, I haven't talked about my book that much with my dad, but I know that they'll stand by me.

     Now, I'm not the girl who's afraid of being judged.
     But every once in a while, the fear comes creeping in when I write, and I know I'm not the only young writer that worries about it.

What if people don't listen to the message in my book because of my age?
What if people don't respect my story because of my age?
What if people judge me for writing more heavily themed stuff?

And even more anxious thoughts…

What if I shouldn't write this because of my age?
What if this holds me back from respect in the future?
What if I offend someone for writing this at my age?

What if? What if? What if?

     I really hate to quote one of the past Gray's works right now, buuuuttttttt… “We could play the 'what if' game all day.” -Enemy of the Dawn
     Hey! Twelve year old Gray, your novella had at least one good part!! The whole rest of that scene was horribly mushy though… lol. DON'T WRITE ROMANCE, WHEN YOUR ONLY LOVE STORY IS THE FEELING YOU GET WHEN YOU SEE PIZZA OR A BOWL OF ICECREAM OR A BOOK, BUT EITHER WAY! XD

*Ahem* Back to the actual topic of this post…

    I have decided to ignore those voices and questions in my head. It isn't going to hold me down, and it isn't going to keep me from having a voice or a passion.

    Listen, if you're a young writer, don't let a simple number hold you back. You have so much fire in you-it's the beauty of being young. I look around and see teens with fire in their hearts and souls, but so few use it.

    But you. YOU have the incredible gift of words. Words are powerful. Way more powerful than we can ever comprehend.

    Don't hide your gift. It doesn't matter if they say you're “too young” to worry and fight against things. The voices of doubt inside your head only spew lies.

    And if someone has ever dashed your hopes or dreams by saying your age matters, they're probably just jealous, because you are getting a head start.

    Don't let a number keep you from using your gift. You have the amazing ability to create and destroy with the simple movement of a pen or the pressing of a key.

     We are so much more than our ages. Don't let fear hold you back from writing that story.

60 comments:

  1. I feel this way so often. Like I'm too young to be fighting the things I want to fight, or too young to even be trying to write. But I agree with you. It's part of our fire. Part of who we are. Thank you for sharing, Gray. :)

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    1. Thank you for reading. It can be such a horrible feeling to feel, no teen writers should feel that way ever. :)

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  2. Gray, you're amazing! You are an old soul. You come off as very mature and wise beyond the number of years you've had on this earth. God has given you wisdom.

    From what I've seen of your book its amazing. Don't give up and let the voices talk to you. Write like no one's watching. You've got this.

    To be honest, I thought you were fifteen. I guess I was close. XD

    Your age doesn't matter. You are gifted and talented. The number is a number. <3 <3

    ~Ivie
    iviewrites.blogspot.com

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    1. I don't really know what to say to that... WOW. Thank you! <3

      Yep! You were close, especially since my birthday is only three months away! :P

      Yes, that is so true. Thank you!

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  3. Gray..... are you spying on meX) jk jk but this is totally me as well. The thing is... I care about what other people think. Sometimes I feel like I need to get a job to help support my family but then I have school and then I want to be a author but I feel like I am not good enough not brave enough. This is so true and thank you for posting on this.

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    1. Well, I stalk everyone on here, sooo.... *strikes ninja pose* yes. XD

      Finding courage can be so hard and a brave thing to do itself. Never feel like you aren't good enough, God doesn't make mistakes. :)

      Keep writing!

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  4. Your writing is beautiful Gray girl. I'm not even a writer, but I wish I had read something like this when I was younger. <3

    xx

    Lora

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  5. I really wouldn't worry about the content. Write what you feel comfortable with. It's the craft that's going to be really important at this stage of the game, I think.

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    1. True. That is also important, thanks for the reminder! :)

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  6. Yes! Write what's on your heart and fight for what's right, no matter what.

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    1. Amen! People need to fight for what's right more often.

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  7. This was an amazing post; Gray. I mean really. It spoke to me and hit me deep. You have an amazing talent as a writer; don't ever give up. With God, you are strong enough to fight those voices of doubt, and remember; God gave you this talent of writing for a reason. He wants you to use it. And I think God placed the topics and themes of your book on your heart; I think he wants you to write about fighting them so that you can inspire other young people do fight them as well.
    Keep writing. For a lot of us; Writing Is Life. ;) <3

    Sincerely,
    Kendra Lynne

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    1. Thank you, I'm glad it spoke to you. You have an amazing talent too, don't give up either!

      Thank you! I don't intend on stopping anytime soon. :)

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  8. It's hard not to struggle with doubts about your age, but for me, age really doesn't matter. :) If you feel you are mature enough (age doesn't affect maturity, in my opinion) to write darker topics, then go for it! You have a story to tell, and a number shouldn't restrict that.

    Great post! <3

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    1. Yes. This whole comment is so true! Thank you, Melissa!! <33

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  9. This post. <3 aka the expanded version of 1 Timothy 4:12. That's always been one of my favourite verses in the bible because it's just so powerful and encouraging. God uses us no matter our age. We don't have to be tall or strong or 'older.' We have time now and he wants us to use our youth for his glory.
    He has called us to write for him, and when the King of the universe calls you to do something, you don't put it off for a few years with the excuse 'I'm not old enough yet.' He knows what he's doing.

    Aaaand that was kinda long sorry. xD

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    1. That's actually my favorite bible verse!

      Don't be sorry because it was longer, everything you wrote was so true! He does know what he's doing!!

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  10. I can't even tell you how much I agree with this. Like this is seriously my thoughts about writing in a post. I am not that much of a writer but besides just having no talent I think one of the reasons is because a lot of the stories and plots I have come up are just kind of dark and or really emotional and touchs on some things some people might think a 12 year old shouldn't be thinking about. This is actually the same thing with songs. I love writing song lyrics and maybe even a whole song once in a while but I am almost always scared to show them to people. I think this is mainly because the things I write about I have either never experienced or they are just kind of dark. The never experimc d thing is like maybe the song is semi romantic or about going through a bad situation. Does that make any sense? Probably not. Haha. :) like seriously though this is an awesome post!

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    1. I hope it helped in some way.

      If your heart and soul is into something it doesn't matter how old you are. Don't let your age hold you back, Nabila! You're going to do amazing things, whether you believe it or not! <3

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  11. This is so sweet and encouraging, Gray!! Your writing voice is beautiful and I enjoy your posts so much. Also I cannot believe you're only fourteen like WHATT. XD You are a lovely writer.

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    1. Thank you, Olivia!

      Yes, I am only fourteen, lol! XD

      You're a lovely writer as well! I can't wait to read more about your WIPs!!!

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  12. I think the adults that judge young teenagers for attempting to write about more emotional or darker topics are the same people that try to tell young teenagers that they don't know what they are talking about when they try to discuss politics or other adult topics. Honestly, it gets my goat every time, as I was one of those kids that was shut down a lot. Granted, it did force me to learn how to formulate my opinion in a respectful and non-emotional manner instead of shooting my mouth, but at the same time it made me super afraid to open my mouth again. This issue still haunts me to this day, and I'm over 21!

    And let's be honest, our generation has been BABIED for so long, it's getting absolutely ridiculous! I think that's why #RW has taken off so darn fast - we're actually talking sense, something that young people have been craving for, I'm sure!

    If Our Lord can instruct a temple full of ancient Pharisees at the age of 12 on the mysteries of God the Father, I say that a teenage author can at least educate her own audience about a facet of life or culture.

    Keep up your writing, and let the fruits of your labors speak for you.

    Catherine
    catherinesrebellingmuse.blogspot.com

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    1. I second Carol. Wow. This comment... you summed up my whole heart behind this post and more! THANK YOU.

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  13. Woah Gray...
    I feel the same way, about being too young to speak about some things and be taken seriously, but then again, we are the next generation. Change starts with us!
    So speak your mind and say what's on your heart-you are going to change the world with your words.
    ~Mira <3

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    1. Yes, exactly! If we don't speak up, who will?

      Thank you for reading!

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  14. Awesome post, Gray!:)
    And I understand how you feel.
    -Quinley

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  15. Amen, Gray! That's so true! Great post. ;-)
    I know exactly what you mean with the romance stuff when you were younger...;-D
    Your WIP sounds so cool! I hope to read it one day. XD

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    1. Thank you!

      Yep, the past mistakes... lol. XD

      Thank you! I hope to finish it someday!!!

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  16. Gray, I seriously thought you were seventeen! I don't know why - I guess that's just the impression I got from your writing XD

    I'm so encouraged by this! I love it when you write blog posts like this, especially rants, because it always hits home in a way that TOTALLY BLOWS ME AWAY :D

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    1. Oh... thank you? Lol! XD

      I'm glad you are encouraged, it makes me so happy to hear that. :)

      Delete
  17. Good post!!!!! I've thought of this myself, but you're right. XD <3 Thanks!

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    1. Thank you! I hope this helps!!!

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    2. You're welcome! It does! XD

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  18. Hmm wow this is really profound, I've struggled with this before especially considering my family doesn't really support me writing...

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    1. I'm so sorry that your family doesn't support your writing! I can't believe they wouldn't-your stories are beautiful. <3

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    2. Well they think it's a waste of time ;) But I understand where they are coming from.
      Thank you for the encouragement :) <3

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  19. Thank you so much Gray! I have been trying to write this book and I got to the third chapter and...

    It is for a contest, but everyone else in the contest is so much older than me. Will the judges not count me, or not read it because of my age?....

    Then I read this. Thank you, I am inspired again! Thank you for your wisedom, Gray!! (I will always read your writing!!!!)

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    1. Go for it! Who knows? They might be more intrigued when they read your age, and maybe even impressed. And even if it doesn't work out, you'll have experience.

      You're welcome. You can do it! Don't let fear hold you back!!! <3

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  20. I think this is the best post I have read the whole day! I admire it so much and thank you for writing this.

    Years back when I started writing I was SO hesitant. I thought that I wasn't old enough, for whatever naive reason that was, to write. I eventually just pushed myself to write and I have to say I'm really happy :)

    I'm always a firm believer that it's great to write at any age. Finding encouragement early on is pretty hard but in the end, the earlier you start, the more years you have to develop it and get onto the actual writing field!

    - andrea at a surge of thunder

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    1. You're welcome, thank you for reading!

      Yes, that is so true. <3

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    1. You're welcome! Thank you so much for reading!!

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  22. This is great Gray!

    -Lia
    catholicgirlstuff.blogspot.com
    lilahsmusicals.blogspot.com

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  23. By the way, Gray; I tagged you for the Rising Authors' tag. Here's the link: https://talesfromanidealist.wordpress.com/2017/09/04/the-of-rising-authors-tag-for-the-third-time/

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  24. Hallo! I don't know if you know about me, but I've read a load of the comments you've put on Jane and Indigo's blogs, so I decided to check your blog out. And Oh my goodness.

    Two things:
    1. I started reading at the /exact right time./ This post was aMAZing! I'm definitely gonna keep reading your blog! :D
    2. I love the 'Hi, wonderful human bean.' thing for the comments. It's hilarious XD
    I'm glad I got to check out your blog! :)

    -Ral
    https://art-of-life-girl.blogspot.com.au/

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    1. Hi! I've seen you around their blogs. :)

      OMIGOSH THANK YOU! It makes me so happy to hear that!!!

      Oh, yep! Everytime I say or write "being" a image of a bean pops into my head, so yeah... wordplay! XD

      I'm glad you got to check out my blog too! I'll be sure to look at yours. :)

      Delete
  25. Hey there, I just wanted to stop by and thank you for the follow! <3

    This post is really good. I started writing a more complicated/grownup book when I was around 14. I definitely struggled with these same thoughts. Because of the more serious content, the story was harder to write. I spent a lot of time on it, and I still haven't finished yet. Sometimes I wonder if I wasn't ready for the story, but by writing it, as messy as it was, I definitely reached another step in my writing.

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    1. Hello! You're most certainly welcome. :)

      Same here, haha.

      That's good though! I'm glad you reached a new level as a writer, that's what's important! :)

      Delete
  26. THIS IS SO INSPIRING. YOU ARE SO INSPIRING. I seriously didn't even know you were fourteen; I would have guessed you were eighteen at least by the maturity and quality of your writing!! YOU ARE GOING PLACES, GIRL. And you have such an advantage because you are young. KEEP DOING WHAT YOU'RE DOING. It is so important. *high fives*

    rock on,
    abbiee

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    1. THANK YOU, BUT YOU ARE WAY MORE INSPIRING THAN I WILL EVER BE, ABBIEE! <3

      Aw, thanks! XD

      Delete
  27. I had this sort of fear, well it wasn't really a fear of mine when I was younger. I just thought I had to be in my 20s before I could become an author. Now I'm sure that as long as I'm confident with my story and an editor is happy with it, I can publish it. (I'm just mainly worried about my audience nowadays because I'm self publishing or at least seriously thinking about that nowadays)

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    1. I'm glad you got ever that fear. It is hard to find an audience when you're self-published, but it's not that hard if you have a blog. :)

      Delete

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