Ten Years a Writer!

Happy 10th AnniVoicery to me!

This week I marked my tenth anniversary as a contributing writer for The Voice.  When I submitted my first article back in November 2013, I had little idea that one piece of writing would lead to hundreds of published articles.

My first article, Essay Avoidance – The Fine Art of Procrastination, described all the dilly-dallying I do instead of working on essays for my AU courses.  (Looking back on it now, I wonder if writing the article was just one more method of avoiding working on an essay.)

I was so pleased to have that first article published and to get paid for it, I resolved to send more articles to The Voice.  I made a pledge to myself that I would send one article each week.  And that’s exactly what I did—for over four years I wrote and submitted one article every week, only slowing down the frequency as I approached my graduation in 2018.

During that time, I also conducted student interviews for The Minds We Meet feature, covered AUSU council meetings, and launched some of the short weekly pieces that are still going today:  Student Sizzle, AU-thentic Events, Scholarship of the Week, and Vintage Voice.

Since each piece published pays (not huge amounts, but it adds up), I’ve earned thousands of dollars over the years—enough that I could have paid all my AU tuition for my degree solely from writing for The Voice.

Writing for The Voice has led me to write for other publications, too.  I’ve had pieces published in Maclean’s magazine education supplements, a Chicken Soup for the Soul book (Making Me Time, 2020), and a fiction anthology (The Things We Leave Behind, 2022.)

The skills I honed at The Voice—writing and interviewing and meeting weekly deadlines—were later put to good use writing articles for a weekly newspaper, The Review in Vankleek Hill ON.  Part of the reason I got that writing gig was because my previous work at The Voice was available online—like an online writing portfolio.

As I wrote in my first article, writing academic essays isn’t a task I enjoy.  But the writing skills I developed while crafting Voice articles helped me in all kinds of writing—even research essays of thousands of words.  That definitely contributed to the “with great distinction” notation on my Bachelor of General Studies degree.

Whether you consider yourself a writer or not, I encourage every AU student to consider writing for The Voice.  As mentioned on The Voice‘s website, “Whether you’re a writing rookie or a seasoned veteran, an aspiring journalist or just writing for the joy of it, join us! All levels of experience are welcome.”

Visit www.voicemagazine.org/write-for-the-voice to get started.  You never know where it might lead!