What are you doing here?

So I have decided to update this blog every Monday, Wednesday and Friday but today was special so I wanted to post something about it. I work as a secretary at a local college and last week the theater teacher and I met for the first time. When I told him I had graduated with a BA in english and wrote he insisted I bring some of my work to him. So I gave him a short story of mine called “Split Peas.” He e-mailed me yesterday, saying he had to talk to me so we decided to meet this evening. We meet in his office and then go out to the loading dock so he can smoke. He’s in his sixties, long hair, tattoos, and no nonsense.

He blows out some smoke, looks at me and says, “What are you doing here?”

I was confused, so i asked what he meant. He told me, “Why are you working here? Your writing is incredible. You need to be doing that.”

I was a little speechless at this point.

“I’ve met several students who write, and their work is good, but this is the first time I’ve met someone and said ‘this is a great writer.’ You really have something, you need to go with that. Can I read any more of your work?”

I ended up talking with him for an hour. During which he asked me to write a one act play for his theatre group to perform at an upcoming competition. I am still a little speechless and stunned by the whole thing. But that was exactly what I needed/wanted to hear at this moment. I have been debating about what to do with my life and I think I am finally going to begin pursuing my dream of becoming a creative writing professor. I want to teach students about not just writing, but about all of the other parts of being a writer. How to get published, how to market yourself, that genre fiction is NOT bad or evil and just as valuable as ‘literary fiction’. I want to do so many things and this is not where I am meant to stay forever.

So, what are you still doing here?



  1. Amie Kaufman Said:

    What an amazing experience–this will be a moment you look back on as a turning point, I can tell. Looking forward to following your journey.

    • Judy Black Said:

      Absolutely! As it was happening it was just like a switch was hit in my brain. I need to make a sign that just says’ What are you doing here?’ to look at every so often.

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