Hey! I’m Valarie. You likely won’t remember how to spell that, so call me Val.

I’m 25 years old. I wasted all the years between 15 and 23 trying to decide whom I hated more: my current self, or all the selves prior to that self. But I don’t really hate my 24- or 25-year-old selves; I consider that progress.

By 26, I’ll be someone else entirely. I finish my BA degree in ~23 days with a major in English and a minor in History. I currently freelance, but I may be switching to remote full-time work early next year. In May, my husband and I are finally leaving our hometown and moving to the mountains of Western NC, and will quite possibly buy a house soon thereafter. And hey, maybe I’ll actually lose some weight by then.

But if there’s been just one constant in my life, it’s writing. I’ve been writing stories since I was eight and won an award for a short, thinly-veiled knockoff of The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe. For years after that, I worked on a romance novel about Kristopher Kringle (yes, Santa Claus — I just thought I’d call him by his more “proper” name, St. Nikólaos be damned) divorcing and then reuniting with Mrs. Claus. Finally realizing that story had no demographic, I planned a seven-novel prequel fanfiction to Harry Potter about the lives of Harry’s parents, peppered with too many OC’s to count.

If there’s a second constant in my life, it’s self-doubt. It’s the frenemy to all creative people, for as much as it hinders us, how different might we be if that voice shut up forever? I gave up on all those projects and dozens more, and I still wonder whether this blog will ever have a true point, because I wonder whether I’ll ever be a proper writer.

I tell myself that a writer is merely one who writes — and I certainly do that. An author is one who creates (augere-s); I have created the rise and fall of dozens of civilizations. But, full disclosure: I have nothing published, for self-doubt has forbidden me from even attempting to send in my written stories.

I am not beginning this blog as an authority on anything, or even as a conglomeration of other people’s writing tips. Sometimes I’ll write about writing about speculative fiction (sci-fi, fantasy, and gothic/horror); sometimes I’ll write about how the universe looks from my tiny, insignificant little corner of perspective.

Mostly I’ll just write, and self-doubt, and write, and change, and write some more. Also I have two cats and they love to cuddle, so that’s a bonus.


Also published on Medium.