As the one beloved Maria Von Trapp once said, “Let’s start at the very beginning…a very good place to start.”
And when I say “the very beginning,” I mean this blog post. But how did we get to this moment of me typing out my first blog post assignment for my Social Media Marketing class?
This requires me going back to why I am taking a class like this in first place, which is to expand my skills (and earn enough of the necessary credits for my undergraduate degree) to enter the ever-changing world of media.
Admittedly, a career in the media, particularly journalism, did not always appeal to me. I actually purposely avoided it. I grew up as a kid always changing her mind, seeing a world full of possibility and having difficulty choosing only one career path to follow. Like many little girls, being a veterinarian appealed to me for a while, but eventually I began to realize a true passion of mine: writing.
As a reserved, socially awkward person, I am not the best when it comes to speaking clearly and truly feeling like I am expressing my thoughts accurately. Instead, I find my voice in its rawest, purest form when etched onto a piece of paper or typed onto a screen. In school, I was usually the one peers went to for help with any homework, but people had a particular respect for my mature use of words, even at a young age. My confidence and self esteem weren’t always very high, so hearing praise and encouragement for my work really supported me through moments of doubt in my abilities.
At times I was even overly ambitious. I always enjoyed creative writing, but when I sat down to start writing a longer project, I struggled to ever finish it beyond a single chapter. One story, however, I was able to complete to its fullest extent. The book, you might ask? With a title like Detective Squirrel, I obviously had an award winner in my hands. I was so excited about this story, I started looking up publishing companies with dreams of seeing a hardcover in a gleaming plastic cover with my name along its spine. In all honesty, though, I was very proud of what I had accomplished. While ideas of careers in design or music crossed my mind, in the back always resided a special love for the written word.
In high school when college started becoming a very real opportunity within grasp, I pictured myself majoring in English. While my grade in Honors English ebbed and flowed occasionally, I always found it the most interesting of my classes. I did very well in my math and science classes, leading to many people in my life urging me toward medical school, but I ultimately decided against that.
But once I finally decided upon a college, declaring my major was not an easy choice. After a two-year-long stint as the editor-in-chief of our school’s newspaper, however, I finally realized how much joy I found in that leadership position. I loved being able to both write editorials and help others hone in on their own writing skills.
Although writing in AP style instead of the MLA format I was used to was and still is a challenge, I am more than willing to take it on, and in just a year of my decision, I have seen myself grow and learn more than I could have ever imagined. I have taken enriching classes from wise (and, at times, not-so wise) professors, met some inspiring people, and stumbled upon amazing opportunities working for the Volante newspaper and South Dakota Public Broadcasting. I look forward to continue sharing my love for writing and storytelling and bettering my skills toward finding success in the media world. And if I get the chance, I would still love to publish a book or two in my lifetime, as well.
Is this where I start singing “Do Re Mi”? I’ll save your ears and refrain from that potential torture. Instead, I’ll refer to a certain quote by Beatrix Potter: “There is something delicious about writing the first words of a story. You never quite know where they’ll take you.” I can’t wait to see where this class and this life take me, and I’m glad I’m able to share it.
Take care, everyone, and keep the faith. –Allie