The Best Investment I've Ever Made in My Writing
How a Vocal+ Membership Inspired Me to Write
Specialized ads freak me out. They really do.
At the same time, those freaky ads can come in handy when you need a new distraction.
At one point in the last year, I had decided to get back into writing. Every time I sat down to write though, I was frozen with spiraling questions:
What have genres become? Dystopian literature has become realistic fiction. Realistic fiction feels like cruel fantasy. I don't know what world my words belong in.
Every story I wrote either felt frivolous or poignant in ways I didn't want it to be. The book I had been writing didn't have a place in the world we were entering. This last year had felt like more than writer's block; it had felt like writer's defeat.
The Unexpected Solution...
When my friend tagged me in a Facebook ad for a $20,000 writing challenge, I rolled my eyes. It seemed far-fetched, especially when I hadn't written anything in almost a year.
As I read through the challenge, though, my heart sped up. I couldn't stop the seeds the prompt had planted from taking root.
Days later, there was a story inside of me that I just couldn't shake.
For weeks, I was finally engrossed in the journey of storytelling. I was curious what my characters would do next; I was intrigued by the world they were forming.
Thirty minutes before the deadline, I finished my story.
After a year of writer's block, pressing that Submit button was the real prize for me.
I had never heard of Vocal Media before - in honesty, I had signed up for the Vocal+ membership solely to enter their $20,000 Little Black Book challenge. I had figured that worst-case scenario, I could always cancel - hadn't I just done the same thing with a CBS All-Access subscription this month?
As I scrolled through the different writing communities, though I found that my words didn't just have a place - they had many places. While I read through multitudes of articles, poetry, and short stories, I was reminded of how many sneaky ways inspiration comes.
So, I Kept it Up
The more I read, the more I wanted to write. I shared my articles and stories to my Facebook and Instagram profiles - it felt good to share this moment of victory with the people I cared about.
The next day, I noticed that those views from friends and family had earned me a few cents. Then, after I had read fifteen other creators' stories, Vocal Media gave me a $5 bonus. I quickly realized that there was more to this website than just challenges, prompts, and inspiration - there was a real opportunity for growth, here.
As an amateur writer, I have always struggled to find some kind of traction when it comes to my artistic career. I work a day job at a thrift store and type away in my spare time - to finally see even a bit of income off of something I love doing has given me hope again.
The Best Part?
What solidified my love for Vocal Media was the sense of community.
Did you know that there are so many Facebook groups for Vocal Media creators?
These groups are filled with talented, seasoned, supportive, and encouraging creators. I have met more support than I ever expected when I first signed up for my Vocal+ membership.
Some of these amazing groups include:
After I joined the Facebook groups, started sharing my stories, and reading the work of others, my stats doubled.
I was shocked! I couldn't believe how much growth could come just by sharing a simple link and asking other people to share their own.
This growth didn't just appear in numbers, though. For the first time in ages, I felt confident and excited to share my work - heck, for the first time in ages, I was excited to actually do the work!
Whenever I needed a break from writing, I could easily log in to the Facebook groups and be greeted with creators sharing their words. I've rediscovered my love of reading short stories on Vocal Media, as well as my love of poetry, fun facts, and how-to guides.
There is never a lack of inspiration when you simply take the time to be inspired.
I'm still new to the platform; I'm still finding my voice, as well as my own rhythm.
Signing up for a Vocal+ membership is an investment in myself and my writing. The membership pushes me to write every day, to practice consistency, and to never underestimate the importance of supporting other artists.
In the time since signing up for Vocal+, I've felt a renewed sense of hope and purpose as a writer. More than that, though, signing up for Vocal+ has made being a writer feel a little less lonely.
Note from the Author
Thank you for reading my article! I appreciate you taking the time to consider my thoughts, and I hope that they help you out. If you enjoyed this article, you can let me know by adding a "heart," or by reaching out to me on Instagram at @emkeels!
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Thank you again for your support. I hope this article made your day a little brighter.