Some weeks, it’s easy to find exactly what I want to write about. Others, I find myself staring at the blank screen, praying that something will come to me by 11 a.m. This week, I’ve done a lot of staring, but there’s something there – just beyond my mind’s reach – that I want to write about.

I’ve done so much in the last couple of weeks. I went to Mellow Mushroom as a mouse, watched a 21-year-old guy dressed as a 14-year-old girl try and grind up on my friend during a Halloween party, visited the Ocala National Forest and ended up with multiple bug bites on my neck and back, rocked out to one of my all time favorite bands (The Pretty Reckless) as they ruled the House of Blues stage, and tonight, I’ll be going to Halloween Horror Nights. I’ve done a lot in these last couple of weeks. A lot of it has been super fun, and I’m psyched to got to Horror Nights for the first time tonight. However, all this fun was wrapped around some pretty not fun things.

I graduate with my BFA in about five months, almost four, and that means that I’ve done a ton of job searching – freelance and full-time. I want to be an Editor at a publishing place. This often surprises many of my friends and family, because those that have known me since I was little know that I’ve always wanted to be a professional writer. What they don’t know is how freaking hard it is to make a living as a writer. My goal: be an Editor and do writing on the side. However, being an Editor isn’t that easy either. Every day, for at least three hours, and for the last month or so, I’ve applied to several freelance jobs for editing and proofreading, and despite my experience, I’ve yet to get hired. I open my Upwork account and BOOM – declined, declined, declined.

Then, I move on to searching for jobs I could have once I move out of Orlando. My current goal is an internship at a publishing firm in New York City. So far, Indeed has shown me a lot of jobs in Massachusetts, which is fine until I see that they’re unpaid and they start before I can leave Orlando. Me and Bad Luck are not on good terms right now. It’s so hard to have fun and enjoy the things I’ve previously mentioned, when my head is so wrapped around what comes next.

Sometimes moving forward, does mean stop. I’ve already written that post and sticky-ed it to the top of my blog, but in this circumstance, I’m not sure stopping is going to help me. I’m wired when it comes to life. I can’t slow down, no matter how hard I try, and I can’t stop thinking about the future, because that’s all I have. Why is it so hard to just live in the moment? Why can’t I just “stop” like I interested all of you to do?

I, honestly, don’t have an answer, and I think that’s why it’s been so hard for me to find things to write about lately. It’s because I haven’t been focused on writing. I’ve been trying my very hardest to focus on living. Is that bad? Probably a little bit. By not writing, I’m not practicing, and without practice, I can’t strengthen and grow as an author. However, if I don’t “stop” and start living a little more, then what will I even have to write about? I feel like Life is laughing at me, but at the same time, maybe it’s teaching me a valuable lesson.

Just because I’m not writing right now, doesn’t make me a bad writer or any less of a writer than I already I am. Just because I’ve decided to give myself a break, to enjoy life while I have it and focus on everything it has to offer, doesn’t mean my career is going to go up into flames. As a student, loans pay my bills and I don’t really have a job. I won’t get another moment like this in my life for years and years to come when I’m old and start living off of retirement, and by then, it will be too late to enjoy a lot of the things I want to enjoy. So, I do it now. I scribble down story ideas as I live, and once I graduate, I take them out and work on something new, but for now, I set them aside. I work on new projects with friends, kiss my boyfriend in public and don’t care, and at the end of the day, I keep searching for jobs, but recognize it’s too early to find anything solid.

Maybe this blog article didn’t do a whole lot for you. I don’t know. I’m not you. However, maybe you’ve been in my position before, or maybe you’re a soon-to-be-grad yourself. Maybe, this post helped a lot, which is really my ultimate goal. I will post on social media about my #ootd and my travels, but in reality, I’ve always wanted to write things that could make a difference. If my jumbled up thought process helped you figure something out, then great. If not, then that’s also great. That means you’ve got your life figured out – good for you.

That’s enough for now. I hope you’ll heed my advice. Go out and live. Stop worrying so much. It may be cliche, but you really do live only once (I mean, unless you believe in reincarnation) and you have to enjoy what you have while you have it, or else you’ll spend your entire life missing things.



Jinapher J. Hoffman