For the four years after I finished high school I was enrolled, part time, in a Professional Writing and Editing course. This was never a pursuit of money, but, rather, of interest. I’ve always been drawn to reading and writing, and was happy to be in a circumstance that would encourage me to partake of the activity more, but also to learn more about it.
It was a fascinating and worthwhile experience, one that developed skills that I use to my advantage in my working life every day. I never actually earned my Advanced Diploma, as I quit requiring two units to qualify when I ran out of subjects to choose in which I was interested. Instead, I continued on with the work I was doing and, despite a couple of downs along the way, am still going quite well.
There were a number of people who didn’t, and still don’t, quite understand why I would quit requiring such little time and effort to get the qualification. Simply, doing and gaining things purely to do and gain them has never been my go.
I’m sure their rationale was to do with the other pull in my life being sport. I have been told from when I started that course until now, some 16 or so years, that I would make a good fist of sports journalism. It never really occurred to me to pursue such an end, as the joy of writing involves, for me, being able to write what I want to say, when I feel the urge to say it.
It never would have worked out for me, as my brain just doesn’t work the way it would need to in order to succeed in such an environment. The world of sports journalism proves, on a daily basis, that the requirement to submit a certain amount of words, by a certain time, on a certain subject, time and time and time again results in a toxic dilution of output.