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The Untold Truth of a Wattpad Writer

A Personal Essay

When your head is filled with many crazy stories full of castles, dragons, the end of the world etc., it gets extremely hard to hold it in and have no way of letting it spill out. This is how I felt for a big portion of my life. As my creativity began to expand and grow as I got older, the capacity I had in my brain became smaller. My math equations became formulas for a love potion. My knowledge on the early American settlers became the history of the early magical kings. The mental image I had of the table of elements became a collection of elemental staffs in the hall of mages. I wanted so badly to be able to create a story out of my thoughts, but I had no way of doing it until I found my outlet.

I first discovered Wattpad through the One Direction fandom. So many people were writing fan fictions about Harry Styles, the Twilight saga, Supernatural, etc. It was so exciting to see that I wasn’t the only one who had this overflow of creativity that needed to escape. So that night I made an account, and without any true writing knowledge I started writing my first crappy Harry Styles fan fiction.

"Tangled up by Savannah Buckner, a Harry Styles Fan-fiction." This story was the beginning of my fictional writing. Think of the most cliché fan fiction you can think of… now triple that and multiply by ten; that was my story. To sum it up, it was a girl who met Harry Styles after a concert, he invited her on tour and they started dating two days later; I never finished it and I took it down. But I had to start my writing somehow and I chose to do it at the age of 13 with a crappy fan fiction idea.

"Anarchy" was one of the best Wattpad fan fictions to ever be created; I praised and worshipped that book. It was so riveting, action-packed, and so well written that it didn’t even feel like a fan fiction. I connected with the characters and grew a personal relationship with them, and that’s what I wanted my stories to do. Megan Devos, author of the Anarchy series, inspired me to write a story much different than the cliché, boring types. I attempted to message her to see if she could help me with my story, but unfortunately she never answered. I was forced to learn the ropes of writing through a series of articles, Wiki How articles, and a couple “How to make it on Wattpad” books. Attempt after attempt I continued to create and throw away perfectly good stories. I told myself that they weren’t good enough and that no one would read it. As soon as I got writer's block, I decided it was time to move on and start a new one, and this cycle continued for years.

I wish someone would have told me that writing wasn’t as easy as it sounded, that even best-selling authors struggled and almost scrapped their stories. At one point, I completely stopped writing because I believed it wasn’t for me. So during the time I stopped all my creativity was poured out through the note app in my phone. I would read so many books on Wattpad, trying to fulfill the void I had. My wrist became rusty from putting down the pen and my keyboard became stiff. Then eventually I stopped looking at my Wattpad all together and decided I had no use of it, so I deleted it. I didn’t want to look at the app that had taunted me every time I saw it. I wanted the voice in the back of my head telling me to write to go away because I was listening to the one who told me I wasn’t a good writer: my countless cliché fan fiction stories, my failed attempts to finish the first few chapters of a new book, and the letter I wrote myself during sophomore year to future me. In the letter I wrote, “ I hope by the time you read this you will have completed or are still writing that story you have been working on, don’t disappoint me.” I disappointed myself. So the only logical thing to do at the time was to listen to the voice that seemed to oddly comfort me the most. The voice that said, “Whatever, you’re not a writer so you can move on now.”

Time began to pass and the void I felt continued to grow. At the time, I didn’t know what it was, I filled my time with music and theater. I thought what I was doing was fulfilling so I couldn’t grasp the feeling that was suddenly sprung upon on me. I remember seeing an Instagram post about the book After by Anna Todd (a Wattpad writer) and how it was planning to be made into a movie. I decided that if something like that could happen to someone than maybe it could happen to me too. So I downloaded the app and began to go write once again. The feeling of my hands gliding over the keyboard was relieving and so satisfying. At that moment I realized this is what I want to so for the rest of my life.

"The Virtue of Power," by Savannah Buckner—a story about a young orphan boy with magical powers, a mysterious shadow queen, and a hidden forest kingdom. I’ve thought about giving up at least ten times and I haven’t even finished chapter six. But in order to grow, I must continue to write and expand my creativity. This time I’m not alone. I found a group of women through Wattpad who have helped me open my mindset to different writing techniques and they encourage me to continue pushing through the doubts.

Without Wattpad I’m not sure I would have ever written again. It has really given me an opportunity to find my voice and write until I can’t anymore. My creativity is no longer bottled up inside of me, it’s now spread out among dragon scrolls and "the late king Gyra Yor of Makira." I continue to struggle and I continue to doubt myself, but there’s this small amount of hope that’s telling me to continue. I am eternally grateful for the space Wattpad has given me to be myself and share my stories with others. I’m so grateful to be a writer. 

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