writer at heart

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday despite the circumstances. We celebrated Christmas this year with a trip to an escape room (yes, they are still open!), playing Betrayal at House on the Hill nonstop, and cooking up a beef wellington for dinner. Even though I couldn’t be with family this year, I made the most of it with great company.

A new year’s resolution of mine is to write more. More articles, more blogs, more fiction stories. It’s crazy to think I’ve been doing this professionally for six years now, starting back when I was studying print journalism at the University of Missouri. I didn’t have the knack for breaking news and trends like my colleagues did, but I attended because I wanted to learn how to become a better writer.

I began like most journalists do, as a general assignment reporter at the Columbia Missourian newspaper. Then, that summer, I studied abroad in Tuscany for a food writing program that changed my life. From there, I kind of hit the ground running. I blogged, wrote, and edited for three different publications my senior year of college. I moved to Denver after, and then scored an editorial internship at the prestigious 5280 Magazine. Since then, I’ve just been freelancing here and there, though my full-time job pre-pandemic was a restaurant server at a boutique hotel by Capitol Hill. I loved being a server because my schedule was flexible, I had dispensable income, and I was able to travel and eat wherever I wanted to. I think when I made the decision to continue working in restaurants, it made sense at the time to follow the hospitality route as I was a server at the same time I was a journalist.

“Some of you, are writers at heart,” I recall Jennifer Rowe telling us during a magazine editing class a few years ago. That bit has stuck with me, and towards the end of nine years in the restaurant industry, I knew it was time to let go of old habits to make room for the new, however nerve-wracking and heartbreaking it was. I’ve always felt a pull to be a writer, a creator, and to use my words to help others. So as life resumes post-plague, I’m optimistic for the opportunities ahead, and I hope to keep my promise to write to my heart’s absolute content.

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