Life

Why After Four Years I’m Saying Goodbye To Writing Online

The first article I’d ever written was published on Thought Catalog.

It’s only fitting that my last be here as well.

There’s truth in the fact that this isn’t my last article ever. But, for the next year – I’m hoping – that it will be. Writing articles has been a treasure in more ways than one. For starters, it’s what gave me the confidence to push forward with my writing.

Ever since I was a little girl, my fingers gravitated toward a blank page like a gravitational pull. Writing has consumed my life. Throughout my teens and early adulthood, I never knew article writing was possible.

Still, for as much as I’ve learned to love it, there’s always been one beast that’s eluded me.

The novel.

When I was younger, I’d written multiple books. But, what do you know about love when you’re 14-years old? I had written about heartache, but only discovered recently how encompassing the word can be when you’re going through it. I’d written about being a mother – well, that one I’m still working on.

While I’d always enjoyed the kinds of stories and lessons Thought Catalog shared with the world, I looked at their writers and envied them.

I envied how prose dripped from their fingertips.

I envied how easy their words came.

I couldn’t be them.

Until I became one of them.

All it took was a leap of faith. It was one moment of courage – and an article about all the things I wanted to say to the man asleep in the other room; all the things I was too afraid to say.

That first article led to another site, then another, then an internship with a magazine, then a re-publication of my articles, to eventually now, where I’m working full-time in my field. Thought Catalog did that. It propelled me by giving me the one thing I lacked most when it came to my creative pursuits: confidence.

Women, to this day, message me online about an article they read on this platform. I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again: following your dreams makes a difference.

And that’s why I’m taking a year off to focus on writing a novel.

I know I’ll be back, and hey – maybe this time next month the fire to write another article will burn and I’ll look like someone who easily goes back on her word.

That’s okay, too.

But, there’s something to be said about recognizing when it’s time to move on to other ventures.

I’m glad that I never published a book in my younger, more rebellious years.

I wasn’t confident back then. I thought that being a writer meant possessing the talent of William Shakespeare – or, Ari Eastman, who to this day remains to be my favorite TC writer – and in my opinion, the most prolific.

But I’ve learned that it’s all about sharing your story.

Life always comes back to timing just as it does finding the courage to muster up the strength to push on the rims of your comfort zone.

This is my outer rim.

For those of you who have stood by me and read my articles, racked up thousands upon thousands of likes, I cannot thank you enough.

I endured a heart-wrenching breakup. I wrote about it so I could remind some young woman out there that her worth and her value is not dependent on a man’s thoughts.

I endured the trauma of burying my mom. For those writers who’ve shared their stories about their struggles, you have given me unrivaled strength.

I endured shitty job after shitty job, until I remembered that my story only goes as far as I tell it to. I want you to remember that the only limitations that exist, are the ones you impose yourself.

The past four years have taught me that there’s truth in the written word – and I’m eager, now to go out there and chase it.

Without this platform, though, I wouldn’t be close to where I am now. From the depths of my heart, thank you. TC mark

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Mid-twenties something navigating through life one cup of coffee at a time. Read more articles from Courtney on Thought Catalog.