Do I really want to write?

the mouse that roared's picture

Hey everyone! I haven't posted an entry here in a long time, but I felt like writing one today.

See, I kind of need some help. I haven't decided where I will be going to school in, like, less than a month. I got invited to go to Walnut Hill School to major in creative writing, and so now I'm deciding between regular public high school and WHS. I've been mulling over this for over a month, but now I really have to decide.

I'm not deciding based on academics. My public school offers good academics, though the students are likely less interested in the classes than students at WHS. I am a good student and I work hard. There are some logistics I am worried about if I did WHS--the regular school day is from eight to two, and then one's major meets for three more hours afterwards. Since I'm majoring in writing, that's a nine-hour day of academic classes. And a lot of homework. Also, I want to be able to do music, art, and theatre, but my time will be much more limited due to the intensity of the courses and my long carpool each day. The school doesn't accomodate a variety of interests in its curriculum. Of course, public school has its problems, too--namely I wouldn't get any writing instruction, would have to take gym instead of yoga, and would not have good college counseling.

Mostly, though, I'm worried about the social aspect of school. At public school, I'm "the nice, quiet, smart girl." I've been that since kindergarten. Everyone has known everyone since forever, and it's hard to shift yourself out of those expectations and into who you really are when it's such an ingrained habit to act how people expect. I have a few friends at school--no really close ones--and a lot of acquaintences. This is due to me shutting into myself last year. Despite my increased confidence and sense of self over this summer, I'm afraid of losing it all when I go back to school. This could happen at Walnut Hill, too. But at least I would have a clean slate at WHS, and more people with common interests.

For some reason, my gut feeling has been to go back to public school, though I have been miserable there. I think it's some sort of loyalty thing, and wanting to overcome the problems I've made for myself there. But I don't know if I can, at least not right now.

Walnut Hill is a more logical choice socially, though I would only go there one year, and would have to finish my senior year at public school or get a GED. I'm not sure if I want to write that much--it would be difficult assignments and a lot of thinking about writing for a year. Though I know I would get better, I'm not sure if I'm in love with creative writing. It's a huge commitment if I don't want to be there.

I fell in love with another school, The Cambridge School of Weston, but they don't have any space left. They offer a variety in the arts, a shorter commute, and a lot of interesting courses (including one in Gay and Lesbian literature :p). I sent in an application anyway, but they said that 11th grade is overcrowded, so they wouldn't let me in anyway if someone dropped out. It's kind of clouding my perspective on WHS versus public. Sigh.

Anyway, that's what I'm dealing with now. I need to request more financial aid for WHS by tomorrow if I want to go. I still don't know. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.


Dim's picture

Hi. Concerning your "littl


Concerning your "little" dilemma here, I think the thing you need to do, is ask yourself how much you enjoy writing, and if you think it probable that going to WHS is going to give you any advatages besides writing. Sounds like you really want to do some other stuff than just write, and that this will not be possible to the samme extent at WHS as if would at your public high school. Also, you said that you would get a clean slate at the public school, anyway. I would drop WHS, and rather try to find someone else to help you with your writing.


the mouse that roared's picture


Thanks for simplifying what I need to think about, and for responding. :) I meant that I would have a clean slate at a new school, but I guess I wasn't clear... oh well...

Are you hanging on to something useless just because you think it's beautiful?
--William Zinsser

ACCgirl's picture


My thoughts -

If you're in any way questioning your passion for writing, I would suggest not going for it. You know what to expect from the public school; you know what the people there are like. You'll obviously get more exposure to different subjects there anyway, and it sounds like you're a little unsure about how far you want to get into writing.

The public school seems like the best choice, but that's just me. I think it's really awesome that you have opportunities like these though.

jeff's picture


The choice is writing. If you want to seriously pursue writing as an option in your life, then two semesters at this school will be either a great push forward or an intensive way to find out it's not your passion. Either way, you're ahead of the game.

Speaking as someone older, not that I have a choice, what music or school play you do in eleventh grade honestly don't matter in the long haul. Is it fun? Sure. But it will always be there. Community theater, music classes in college, bands, etc.

Not sure why you want to nestle back into the reluctant bed you've made for yourself in public school. You have an opportunity to get out and do something interesting, consider it.

Also, don't worry about next year yet. One step at a time, maybe this or some other school will be where you end up for your senior year. Focus on the issue at hand, without trying to build a case against it based on something 12 months from now that you don't know about.

Personally, I think a year like that has the power to change your life. I know it would have changed mine. It's mainly dependent on how serious you are about writing. If that is the case, then it won't be extra work. The commute is just extra time to read. You won't be missing out on anything if you are doing what you are passionate about.

And if you do want to pursue writing, this will look better on a college transcript than public school.

Also, since I had this problem, if you are passionate about too many things, I think you should definitely take some time and focus on one, if for no other reason to remove it from the mix if it's not your calling. It will only give you more energy to pursue your other interests once one is crossed off the list.

I know it seems like a huge decision since it is a whole year, but... really, unless you plan to die in your 20s, it's nothing.

extreme447's picture

Well, as people have said before, how much do you want to make writing your main focus? Is writing important enough to give up things like chorus?