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Vocal Gave Me My Wings

A Website + An Insecure Writer = Magic

By Misty RaePublished 2 months ago 3 min read

I've been writing since before I could hold a pencil. I made up stories in my head and recited them to my parents for spare change as a toddler.

Little Story Teller

When I finally learned to put words to paper I did it. A lot. My first published work was in my elementary school newsletter, the Roadrunner. It was a poem about snow. I was 5. I spelled blew wrong. I spelled it like the colour. But hey, I was 5!

Until recently that little poem with the poor spelling was the highlight of my writing career.

I learned quickly that a brainy kid with a penchant for words wasn't exactly cool. I wrote, but I hid it. I hid it for decades.

I was terrified of the judgment. I was terrified of someone laughing at me. I wanted to be a writer, but I was scared to show anyone my writing. You just can't have it both ways.

I had a sense I was pretty good. Or at least reasonably proficient. But I was still unwilling to risk being wrong about that. My words come from my soul so rejecting them is like rejecting me.

Then, I took a chance. I saw a contest, a challenge, they called it. Write a story about a little black book and win $20k. All I had to do is sign up for a mere $10 per month. Well, I'm Canadian so $10 US is 12 to 14 bucks depending on the exchange rate.

I didn't win that one. But I kept entering challenges and I finally did win. And then I won some more.

I think I've won or placed in 7 challenges if you count the Ukraine Freedom one and the Fiction Awards. I count them and I think Vocal should count them too. Credit where it's due and all that.

I've made a lot of great writing friends here. And my writing has grown. I can see it when I look back at my earlier work. My non-fiction was always pretty good, my poetry was okay, but my fiction sucked the big one!

I knew it. I was aware of my weaknesses. I still am. But I kept trying. I kept entering and reading and interacting and learning.

Now it's time to make a decision.

And I have.

Vocal gave me something I wasn't able to get anywhere else - the feeling that I was actually a real writer. You know what I mean. It allowed me to write my words, and let the world see them. It gave me confidence every time I posted a story on Facebook and someone said something nice about it.

Vocal made me think that anything was possible, even the idea of me making a living off my silly little words. It awarded me prizes and top stories and always, always paid as promised (I was worried, I read stuff). But I've always been treated fairly and honestly.

However, with all that said, my free year is coming to an end and I'm facing a tough decision. Do I stay or do I go?

I've made it, and with a bit of a heavy heart, but more excitement really, I've got to go. It's time. I'll stay a member, but I won't be a Vocal + member when the free membership expires.

I might still post things. And I'll certainly still read the fabulous work that's on here. But my challenge days are done. Look at my profile. I think I've proved my point.

Vocal taught me that I CAN write. Vocal taught me that I CAN make a living from my words. Vocal gave me my wings and made me believe that I can write that best-selling novel (coming soon...).

So thank you Vocal for launching a terrified baby bird writer, like a child that leaves the nest, I'm ready to fly solo now. XOXO


About the Creator

Misty Rae

Retired legal eagle, nature love, wife, mother of boys and cats, chef, and trying to learn to play the guitar. I play with paint and words. Living my "middle years" like a teenager and loving every second of it!

Reader insights


Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

Top insights

  1. Heartfelt and relatable

    The story invoked strong personal emotions

  2. Easy to read and follow

    Well-structured & engaging content

  3. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

  1. Expert insights and opinions

    Arguments were carefully researched and presented

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Comments (29)

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  • Sadhon Chiran2 months ago

    Amazing, Congratulation on your Reall Top story.

  • top7best72 months ago

    Talent is often instinctive since our birth, and the individual may excel in any field he loves and gives him special attention.

  • Zorica Malic2 months ago

    Congratulations 👏

  • Kim2 months ago

    Don’t go! Vocal doesn’t mind heights, take us with you as you fly!

  • Oh, I hope you don't leave. We just got here! - Anneliese

  • R. J. Rani2 months ago

    Congratulations on all your achievements on Vocal and yet another top story, Misty. I'm sure you'll succeed in whatever you do next! And I hope to read more from you whenever you choose to share here 🤗

  • Gerald Holmes2 months ago

    Congrats Misty, I have always loved your voice and hope to still read your words long after Vocal.

  • C. H. Richard2 months ago

    Congratulations and I echo some of the same feelings though I'm not quite ready to fly yet!. I have enjoyed your writing and glad you will still be posting even once in awhile. Also very cute little writer picture. ♥️

  • Aschatria Xyana2 months ago

    I just started here and I have no idea what to expect. Considering your experience I might give it a try.

  • Victoria R Rise.2 months ago

    Congratulations 👏

  • Bianca Wilson2 months ago

    Congratulations! This was inspiring, wish you the best!

  • Melissa Ingoldsby2 months ago

    Congratulations on your top story and your wins!! Great inspiration !

  • Kendall Defoe2 months ago

    Good luck. As a fellow Canadian wondering if I can ever get a novel out into the world, I will be following your story with much interest!

  • Chelas Montanye2 months ago

    This is something that every aspiring writer needs to hear!

  • Alex H Mittelman 2 months ago

    Thats great! Glad you’re writing! That ‘blue’ me away 😀

  • Congratulations, not nearly so much for top stories & winning/placing in challenges as for the growth you've experience on here. I'm well acquainted with the angst you felt. Every time I comment on a story, article or poem I wonder if this will be the time I'm just stupid or, worse, offend? Every time I wrestle with a story, grinding through the words until I'm satisfied, I read what someone else has written & find myself nothing more than a pretender to the art. So many growing pains to wade through. It saddens me to hear that you are letting your subscription lapse when I've only now stumbled upon you. But it thrills me to hear of the vision you have for what lies ahead. Best of wishes in all your endeavors. Don't be a stranger.

  • JBaz2 months ago

    Congratulations on the win, We will however miss seeing your writings. You are talented and I am glad you know it. Form one Canadian to another get out here and share your stories with the world.

  • Cathy holmes2 months ago

    yay. Congrats on the Top Story.

  • Congratulations on your Top Story🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉✨💖😉

  • Awesome ✨ 💖You Got This❗😉

  • Charlotte Flores2 months ago

    Congratulations on finding the confidence to share your writing and taking the chance to enter writing challenges! It's great to hear that Vocal has been such a positive and empowering platform for you, and that you've been able to grow and improve your writing skills through your experiences there. It's understandable that you're facing a tough decision now that your free year is ending, but it's clear that you've made great progress and achieved a lot during your time with Vocal. Your decision to move on while still staying involved in the community sounds like a great plan, and we wish you all the best as you continue to pursue your writing dreams. Keep flying high!

  • Dana Crandell2 months ago

    Congratulations on your accomplishments. Best of luck in the future.

  • Congratulations on Top Story. Your journey with Vocal and writing is similar to mine. That challenge drew me in. I've only placed in one challenge. But I have gained confidence as a creative writer. Then when my free trial was up "Do I stay or do I go?" was a big question to tackle. I decided to stay!

  • Oh, I get it. Wings because of the new flight challenge. I see you 🤝

  • Babs Iverson2 months ago

    Congratulations on top story!!! Keep on writing my friend!!!

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