Friday Fun is a group post from the writers of the NHWN blog. Each week, we’ll pose and answer a different, writing-related question. We hope you’ll join in by providing your answer in the comments.
QUESTION: If you weren’t or couldn’t be a writer, what other profession would you most like to try?
Jamie Wallace: I always wanted to be a singer. I do sing quite frequently – in the car, the shower, and sometimes in the living room where passersby on the street might catch me at it. I’ve even sung in public – once in high school as part of a garage band that performed at graduation, and for a brief stint a year or so ago I sang backup for a local indie band. I can carry a tune and even harmonize decently, but I never had the right training or could muster enough courage to really put myself out there. I’m an unabashed American Idol addict and love to follow the journeys of all the up-and-coming vocalists on the show. Singing to me is not that different from writing. They are both forms of expression that are intimate and exposing. Done well, each has the potential to move people in deep and magical ways. I may yet put together a girl band for some local, musical fun; but – for now, at least – I think I’ll just be grateful that I am able to be a writer.
Deborah Lee Luskin: I was on my way to an academic career when I veered off that path, thinking I was taking the fast track to writing full-time. Now, I think I’d pick something with more immediate and tangible results and be a potter or beekeeper or a breakfast cook. On days when my work isn’t going well, I read the Help Wanted ads, and wonder what it would be like to work in a fast-food joint, bake bread at the local, artisan bakery, or work on a farm.
Lisa J. Jackson: A math teacher. I loved high school and college algebra and trigonometry and thought I’d end up teaching at some point. I haven’t dabbled in either for quite a while, but that’s the first thing that popped into my head when I read the question. 🙂 I think I’d enjoy being a barista at a cafe or a bartender at a restaurant – so many stories! Then again, if I couldn’t be a writer, what would I want stories for? I’m grateful that I can write and that I’m living my writer’s life, though and can’t imagine anything sweeter or more fulfilling, and hope I never need to. 🙂
Teaching was my first career. Like a boomerang, it keeps circling back and pulling me in; sometimes for a day, sometimes for a term. Also did the sales and marketing thing for a Fortune 50 company and on my own as a consultant.
In this chapter, I am both a writer and a chef.
And when this chapter ends? Who knows? I’ve always wanted to be a lounge singer with a blond bouffant hairdo and a blue chiffon dress. I like to imagine myself draped over a piano singing jazz in a sultry voice.
Did I mention that I can’t sing, never wear blue and have brown (with a fair amount of gray) hair?
Julie Hennrikus: I am very blessed. I have a portfolio career that suits me very well, and I think I am where I am supposed to be (running an art service org for theaters, teaching part time at Emerson College and writing). If I had known how much I love teaching, I wonder if I would have pursued an academic career with more vigor. And I do wonder if I can make writing full time a final phase of my career.
And sometimes I think about owning a cupcake bakery. . .
Wendy Thomas: Like many of the other writers here, I’ve had various jobs throughout my life. Clinical Microbiologist, Telephone operator at a psychiatric hospital, Nanny for a Hollywood director’s kid, Instructional Designer, I’ve even worked in a book store and I’ve even taught at a college.
But my one perfect career? When I was a pharmacy student in college (yeah, I know) I dropped out of the program my fourth year (making my parents really happy – not) what I REALLY wanted to do most in life was to be a stand-up comedienne. The problem was that I didn’t think I could make a career out of it, so I choose medical biology and writing. (have I told you my gonorrhea story?) Although I have had a great ride throughout the years, I just wonder how things might have turned out if I have followed my one true desire.