A Writer's 21st Century Memoir.

EnCOMpassing My Life

I woke up this past Tuesday and barely rolled out of bed when the alarm on my phone went off.

Why was I up this early? I don’t have class till 3p.m. I had thought to myself and slowly climbed back into bed. I woke up a few hours later and happened to look at my note pad.

Go to COM day and sign in for extra credit.

F#ck! I forgot about COM day! was the phrase that coursed through my mind.

I ended up high tailing it onto campus to listen to at least two speakers (I really needed that extra credit). I dropped in on Matt Prince’s hilariously witty lecture about how he made it into the business of communication.

I jotted down his blog and was generally interested in what he had to say, but it wasn’t until I listened to Steve Lopez’s story that all my swiftly changing thoughts just clicked.

Lately I have been trying to find out what I wanted to do with my life. I was in the typical English Literature major’s dilemma. What the hell was I going to do with this degree?

I loved writing and telling absurd and random stories to any who would listen, but I realized no one will pay you to just sit down and type out a novel. I definitely needed a day job that was similar to my inner most and deepest desires.

In comes Steve.

Steve Lopez, a columnist for The Los Angeles Times since 2001, spoke as the keynote speaker for the event.  He talked about the importance of education and never passing up on a potential good story, and then he told the story about The Soloist.

Lopez wrote a series of columns about his relationship with schizophrenic bassist Nathaniel Anthony Ayers which inspired the film The Soloist. Lopez has written The Soloist: A Lost Dream, an Unlikely Friendship, and the Redemptive Power of Music along with several other novels.

Steve managed to pull off what I actually would love to do—make a living off of telling stories to the public and then finding that great story worth telling which eventually gets spun it into a book.

Genius.

I left COM day with an epiphany. I think I need to change my minor into my major and pursue Journalism.

Right now if I did go through with it, I would have generally the same amount of classes left to graduate as I did before the decision, I would graduate nearly around the same time, and I would have a general clue of what the hell I was doing.

It just made sense.

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