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Is Writing My Future?

Why do I write & why do I post on Vocal?

By Nicole FennPublished 20 days ago 6 min read
Top Story - November 2023
Is Writing My Future?
Photo by Etienne Girardet on Unsplash

I write because I honestly can’t draw what I see in my head.

No, but really, why do I write? Why do I waste time sitting in front of blank screens and empty pieces of paper, the pristine white taunting me, pushing me away, telling me not to come back unless I actually have a good idea?

Why do I stay up later during the week when I should be sleeping for my 9-5 the next morning? Why do I try when little to no one reads my work? Why do I post on Vocal when it seems like not even the Vocal Team reads my work for challenge submissions (did anyone sit down and read two of my stories that were almost about a 30-minute read - not likely)? Why do I write when it seems as soon as I put words to a page, they’re tossed out into the abyss, never to be seen again?

So, why? The answer to a question I’ve been asking myself for a while didn’t even come to me until a couple of weeks ago.

I write because it sets something within me free.

I write to expel, to cleanse, to wonder, ponder, to explore, to calm and soothe, to share, to connect. I write because it allows me to clear my head, the anxious brain never ceasing. It allows me to sift through thoughts that would otherwise become muddled and lost amongst the chaos inside my head. When creativity just…stops. When no design ideas or plans or projects come to mind, when the motivation for such things is sapped. I still seem to have a neverending stream of ideas for stories, novels, short stories, and so on.

It’s something within me that just never seems to cease.

And it’s brought me to a standstill in my life, quite honestly. Wondering if this is what truly fills a hole, makes me happy, that it’s something I need to pursue professionally instead.

But how? Surely it can’t be that simple?

Surely it can’t be worth the risk, right?

And the worst question of them all - am I actually good enough of a writer to pursue such things? Am I actually good enough to write a whole novel, to be a journalist, a screenwriter, a copywriter? All professions I've thought about pursuing multiple times, and many times on a whim.

I think I am, most times. But, half of the purpose of writing something is for others to read it, enjoy it, connect with it, or even hate it, and argue against it. Love or hate, it’s still garnering attention. And if there’s one thing my design classes have taught me in college, it was to be resilient to particularly harsh feedback or criticism and take it instead for what it is deep down - just plain feedback. Because as a creative, a designer, a writer, or simply human, we’re all changing and growing. We all have the chance and opportunity to learn and improve. My writing, for certain, has changed over the years for better or worse. There’s no denying it.

But it is enough to fill an aching gap in my soul that yearns for creative stimulation almost every day? To be happy in my profession and not work to live or even live to work - but to coexist in a profession that satisfies me both in my soul and creative mind, but financially and in the growth of my skillsets. There is harmony, I know there is, I just have yet to find it.

At the moment, however, writing remains a hobby. Something that kickstarts my creativity and fills any sort of empty nothingness that the world around has naturally created, devoid of hope and peace. Writing helps to maintain that peace, any sort of hope and happiness. Ideas that bring joy and adventure. Stories that take you to distant lands created from nothing but the incredible imagination, or stories that have you traveling to extraordinary lands that are much closer and very real.

And even if it’s not done as a profession yet, I still write for the sake of writing. Because I can.


Vocal, (my account) when starting 5 years ago, wasn’t something I’d ever expect success to come from, or even use. I’ve been using another website, 750words.com, that at least kept me consistent with writing and provoking new ideas daily. Hell, I even wrote for 365 days straight in 2021 on that website. And my account here on Vocal still sat untouched.

Writing on this website, and submitting to challenges; while I don’t expect to win every time - I don’t even expect to get really anything from each challenge I submit to. But, just submitting a story to my profile alone to be approved is a huge win in my book. Because after each story, after spending hours, days, and weeks on just one story to be read by a handful of people, or no one at all; I’m never not proud of what I can create.

And each story only fuels me. Comparing my writing style and voice and seeing that progress, that change? That’s all I need to keep going. That’s all I need to submit my next story, my next “brilliant” idea to another challenge. And hope something sticks. And if it doesn’t, well, that’s the first chapter of a novel I’ve been stuck on or a thought I’ve finally been able to manifest into words after weeks of pondering.

But, it wasn’t always this way. Posting my work on such public forums in such vulnerable states. Vocal has helped me to share my work more; to post it on my profile, and pat it on the shoulder with a ‘good luck, you got this’. It’s taught me to allow my writings to stand on their own - like I’ve been told to do with my design work in college - and let people take these stories for what they are; to enjoy them or not. It’s boosted my confidence when I do have a few people reading, especially if it’s an exposed part of my life grafted into a story that many agree they have connections to or have also experienced in some form themselves. To remind myself that my ventures are human and that many of us are just human.


About the Creator

Nicole Fenn

Young, living - thriving? Writing every emotion, idea, or dream that intrigues me enough to put into a long string of words for others to absorb - in the hopes that someone relates, understands, and appreciates.

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Comments (12)

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  • Bianca Wilson18 days ago

    That opening line was me to a T! I often tend to imagine things as a manga or anime setting but opt to write it out instead.

  • Tressa Rose19 days ago

    I love this, very relatable!

  • Hannah Moore19 days ago

    I'm hearing a lot of echoes here!

  • Naveed19 days ago

    Well done! Keep pushing forward with your excellent work—congrats!

  • DEUXQANE19 days ago

    This is so excellent. You're speaking all the things that I think about in my head when it comes to writing--am I good at this, why do I do this, what am I saying to people, etc. etc. And then I also remember the same; that all engagement (be it healthy, incendiary, disparaging, uplifting) is still engagement. When you say things like how "writing remains a hobby" but later saying that it kickstarts your creativity and helps to maintain that peace and happiness, it makes me think about my own journey when I was exercising to lose weight. Before, exercise used to be a tool to get me to lose weight so I'd stop hating myself; now, many years down the road doing this, exercise is a celebration of movement and a meditative experience--so while I'm not much of a frequent writer myself, I trust in your perspective that writing will eventually do something to my mind and my emotions the more I keep doing it. Also, I remember 750words! And I am so, just.. impressed and awed by your consistency. To me, you describe what I picture to be the "heights" of what it's like to be a consistent writer. Everything you've written here, I hope to fully embody and echo someday.

  • Mason Darnielle19 days ago

    Honestly feel that Vocal is a great platform (only a month being on here) I have wrote 12 entries so far and told about 5-10 people to go see if my work is worth reading overwhelmingly I have gotten such good response. I am happy to have came back to this site I made my account back in 2019 but never posted anything. Long story short my challenge for myself is to get about 10 times that amount posted in about 9 months. Setting goals helps me a ton!

  • Mattie :)20 days ago

    Beautiful! So true! Congrats on earning top story. Mine got chosen too :)

  • Real Poetic20 days ago

    Thanks for sharing & congrats! 🎊

  • JBaz20 days ago

    Nicole, I agree with what Dana expressed. This is a fickle forum , no doubt. But as with anything input takes work. ( usually for little reward) I stopped going on face book, and the vocal Facebook groups. I watched my reads go down, but I am ok with that as it took much of my free time. I like the way you Expressed yourself in this article and wish you all the luck. Do not stop writing Congratulations

  • Dana Crandell20 days ago

    There are a lot of parallels for me in this and, I suspect, for a lot of the other creators. My Vocal account sat neglected for a long time. I was writing and being paid to write, but what I was putting out there wasn't "me." My writing here comes from a different place. I still write content, because it pays the bills. Without that, I couldn't afford to spend the time I do here. The only advice I can offer to increase your readership is to read and comment on other creators' work. We're all looking for the same thing here.

  • Gerald Holmes20 days ago

    Excellent writing. You have described how a lot of us feel on here. Well done and Congrats on your Top Story!

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