Thursday, 14 July 2011

What Comes Next?

Every day in life, we're reaching for something. Aiming for a goal. We're yearning to develop.
When we're born, we're learning how to survive. How to eat, drink, and sleep. And most of all, we're learning how to ask for help.
When we're a toddler we're learning for the first time how to stand on our own, how to take that first step and remain upright.
When we're four, we start school and education unravels. We're suddenly learning numbers and words, and places in the world.
When we're eleven, we're taking another leap in growing up. We're leaving behind a place that we've known for the last seven years, friends we've made, and suddenly we're starting a new school, a place where we're starting again.
At thirteen, we're learning change. Curves begin to develop and suddenly we need a bra because we have breasts. Our moods are like a roller coaster, and we have no control over these changes. Whether we like it or not, our bodies are changing, and we're growing more into an adult than ever before.
At sixteen, everything we've learned until now comes down to GCSE'S, and after that, we need to decide the next step. For the first time, we have options. We can leave education, or we can stay.What do we do next?
At eighteen, we're done with A Levels, or college, and now we have another big decision to make. What do we do next? Do we join the public services? Do we study media, and journalism? Do we become an air hostess, and travel the world via the air?
For some, University is what comes next. Three more years of education, but this time, its in a subject that appeals to us. For me that was writing. I studied script writing, and media, and I am not an academic person. I thrive when I'm allowed to do my own thing, so the idea that, after three years, I could be writing about the things that matter the most to me, I stayed. At times, I wanted to quit, believe me. But now here I am, with a not so great, but not tragic, 2:2 degree in Media Writing, and for the first time in a long time, I have no answer to that big question looming over me. What happens next?
During the first two years of University, I was told that I had talent. My pursuit for an agent, and a book deal, and my name on top of The New York Times Bestsellers List wasn't just a dream, it was a goal. It was encouraged. Someone that wasn't a blood relation had faith in me that I was talented, that I would survive, and that the dreams some called pipe dreams were achievable.
And then, during the final year at University, the bubble I'd been sat in suddenly popped, and I realised, I'm not alone. I may have talent and dedication on my side, but there are a lot of other talented people in the world who want the same goal. I won't be the first, or the last person to write that book we think is a bestseller. I won't be the first or the last person to think that there's a place for me in this world to make a name for myself. And I won't be the first or the last person to let self-doubt sink in.
Because for the first time in my life, I don't know what's next. I don't know how to quit my job in retail and put myself out there in the world. I don't know whether my dream job is within journalism, publishing, or PR. I don't know how to go from being student and part-time sales assistant to being Lo, the journalist, or Lo the best-selling author. I don't know if I'll move to America, if I'll have a wardrobe packed full of LouBoutins. I don't know whether my words and emotion will be enough to put into a song, or if someone, somewhere, will pick up my film script and believe in it. But I have to believe and hope.

So, for any person who has ever sat there and thought, 'What comes next?' and has no answer, this is what I have to tell you.
Since we were born, our lives have been dictated. We've been told to go to school, to study hard and to get good grades, and then when the time came, to choose a career that made us happy, or made us the most money. But no one told us how to get it. And there is no step-outline in the real world. And its packed full of competitiveness, and other talented people. But you just need to believe that you will get there, one day you will. And its scary putting your foot out there in the world and getting rejection, but lift your foot up and smack it back down again, persistence will pay off and great things will come to you.

We all need to believe that, because if we don't, then we doubt ourselves, and its when doubt starts to creep in that our dreams slowly fade away, and without dreams to strive for, what comes next?


  1. such a great writer. cant wait to read your bestsellers one day =)


  2. That really means a lot to me, thank you! :) xx