My 18th Birthday + 10 Years of Writing!

I don’t know the exact day I picked up the pen for the first time and wrote my first story. However, I can strongly remember that when I was eight years old I read both The Lord of the Rings Trilogy and The Chronicles of Narnia series, and also wrote one of my most memorable first stories, The Soldier of the Lord. It was probably a few hundred words and had a very cringy plot with a cheesy Christian message, but it was a huge step toward becoming the writer I am today.

And here I am. I just celebrated my 18th birthday two days ago, and I can officially call myself an old adult! πŸ˜‚

It’s so easy to always be looking forward to the goals you want to achieve. I’m very hard on myself when it comes to achieving goals, reaching deadlines, and checking off every single thing on a to-do list. This can be quite destructive when you set the bar too high–which is what I do every day. For a long time now I’ve caught myself being very frustrated and stressed out about the future because I’m expecting too much of myself–especially this past year. I’m doing my best to ease up on my expectations for myself, listen to my mind and body more, work more on being present in the moment, and be grateful for the position I’m in now instead of wishing I was higher up the ladder toward my dreams.

As a step towards that, I’ve been reflecting on the past ten years of my life, from when I first started writing until now. It blows me away how far I’ve come from an eight-year-old kid, nerding out about stories and wanting to write his own, to an eighteen-year-old kid, still just as nerdy, still with so much to learn, but maybe a touch wiser, and a touch better at telling coherent stories.

Every single time I reached a rut in my writing, God opened another door for me to walk through, for me to continue and progress.

When I was eight and had just finished my first story, my mom was there to read it, give it a small edit, and gently inform me for the first time that no, my story wasn’t flawless, but that it was a cool project, and it was good, and I could make it better through edits.

When I was eleven, and had just finished my first 50,000-word novel and was feeling like I had maxed out on all my potential, God led me to The Young Writer’s Workshop, where I learned that no, I still had copious amounts of things to learn. These doors go on and on.

God opened the doors for me to launch my blog and start platform building, get a poem published on Story Embers to encourage me to keep going, and even just recently, He put everything in place for me to join the Author Conservatory to get professional feedback and personal instruction on how to one day set up a sustainable and successful career as a real author.

It’s when I look back at the path I’ve walked for so many years, put in so many hours of hard work, so many gallons of shed tears, and so many moments of pure joy into my storytelling abilities that I am confident that this is what God has laid upon my heart to do. And unless He pulls a complete 180 turn and allows my writing career to crumble to dust, I will press on for Him. Ten years of work laid a solid foundation and have given me so much knowledge and guidance toward becoming an author. But it is just the beginning. I’m still a very young man in this wide wide world, celebrating my 18th birthday, and I am humbled at the amount of progress I need to make before I’m anywhere close to being as skilled as the authors I look up to.

So thank you so much, dear reader, for letting me rant about this wild journey God has weighed on my heart. Thank you to all my blog followers, email subscribers, friends, family, and fellow young writers who have watched me grow, helped me grow, and encouraged me in my most discouraging times. I wouldn’t be here without you.

I am so grateful for these past ten years, and so happy that my dreams and aspirations have not faltered throughout. If I can write books half as impactful as The Chronicles of Narnia, half as detailed and vibrant as The Lord of the Rings, and good enough for some people to pick it up, read it all the way through, and set it down with a sense of inspiration and positive change in their hearts, I will be the happiest man alive.

This was a bit of a different post, a little unorganized, but I wanted to write it as a recap of my journey thus far and a celebration of two large milestones. So with that said, thank you again. Go out and make a change in the world, be it big or small! Proclaim God’s glory and don’t let the weariness of the world weigh down your joy. Fight on.

Until later my friend,

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10 thoughts on “My 18th Birthday + 10 Years of Writing!

  1. This must be so exciting, Caleb! Congratulations!
    How amazing the way that God has moved mountains in your life! It’s a truly incredible and faith-building experience. Best wishes for your writing career! 😊

    Liked by 2 people

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