17 April 2009

The short story of an aspiring photographer that never wanted to be a writer

A ten year old me receives a camera for Christmas.

The best gift.

The start of something great.

I flash everything. Uncles; grandparents; my sisters, my brothers.

My mother says to my ten year old self she wants to pay for writing lessons.I ask Riding? Horses?! All excitement and joy. She says no, she says writing, words.Less excitement; oh. I don’t want to be a writer. I want to take pictures. I want to capture everything.

Thirteen and my mother read a story I had written. She tells me to take writing classes. Get lessons. She says I could be a great writer someday. I tell her, Momma no. I don’t want to write. I want to be a photographer. I know the name of the profession for capturing everything now.

At fifteen, I begin to find the will, the want, to write. Justin died. And I write. I write how much it hurts, how much it aches. It’s tragic. And it’s beautiful and the only thing I really own. I tell the paper how much I miss him. I tell it what it feels like to have a dead brother when you’re only fifteen; when he was only seventeen. He will always only be seventeen. I write for a year straight about him; maybe more. My mother finds it and worries. But still. You should be a writer. I don’t want to write for people. I want to capture their faces. I want to photograph their life. I don’t want to be a writer.

At seventeen I find another reason. I fall for the boy that smiled at me. A blue gym short and gray t-shirted seventeen year old girl, falling for the boy that smiled at me. I write. I write about the things I want him to know and everything I wish I knew about him. Two years of I want you I need you I miss you where are you? Two years of I love you, but I won’t tell you. I love you, and I told you. Six more months of how could you, and why couldn’t you just? I wrote it all: the anger and the love and the image of forgiveness that is just a lie I learned to tell really well. I wrote him poems and letters and let the whole world see what he did to me. And then, I stopped.
I still want to be a photographer. I want to capture images.

I kept writing, though. I wrote whatever came to mind. I wrote about this boy I like. I wrote about the summer sky and green eyes. I wrote about rain and new roads to travel. I wrote about the galaxy I want to discover. I want to be a photographer.

I keep writing. I write the words you are reading. I write the short story of an aspiring photographer that never wanted to be a writer. And all I do is write. I can’t stop. I want to paint pictures with words. I want to write. My dog is watching me. He wants outside, but I am too consumed. I don’t want to be a photographer. I want to write it all. I want to paint the pictures the cameras can’t see. I want to let people feel what I have felt and what I am trying to hide.

I’m giving myself to this new dream. It’s been waiting to unfold, to materialize my whole life. And I’m finally embracing it, loving it.

I want to write for no other reason than I don’t know how to stop.


  1. I know you want to be a writer, and no longer desire to be a photographer! But one day I plan to open my own photography business, and maybe, just maybe you can work with me! And maybe, if my business booms enough, you can manage your own branch! Then you could write about the joy, or sadness you caputerd in those pictures from a wedding, or a raniy day funneral. Hope all is well. Take care.

    P.S I loved this entry!