This Year So Far as a Writer

This year has been one of the most successful and stressful for me as a writer. I am in my third semester of a Creative Writing MFA program that requires a bunch of reading and writing, I have done a poetry reading, gotten into a car accident, written a novella, published a novella, worked on several novels and short stories AND had a new baby this year named Zuri.  She’s lovely.

In February, I did my first poetry reading, compliments of The Poetry Foundation here in Chicago. Because I don’t view myself as a poet, the whole ordeal was stressful, but it was fun and it paid handsomely. As I stared out at the crowd from the podium, I stuttered a bit while wondering what I was really doing there. The reading was a complete success.

The MFA program has been kicking my ass daily. I have had to read August Wilson’s Century Cycle. Although the plays are insightful, having to answer questions about them has been overwhelming. I still have a 12-page paper due and I have to take two more tests before the semester ends. So far, I have gotten A’s on all the assignments.

My collection of literary fiction short stories “The Book of All Things Beautiful” is available for download on Amazon. Click the link or search my name, Jermaine Reed, and look for the book that has someone sitting with a red umbrella. You can’t miss it. The stories are wonderful.

My new Science Fiction novella “Operation Soul Cast” will be available for download or for print May 1, 2018. It is a wonderful story about minds being cast into different bodies and bloody outcomes.

My car accident has been a headache. I have two Nissan cars, and for some reason the insurance company has gotten them mixed up. It really boils my blood. It’s like they shoot me as much paperwork as they can to deter me from continuing my claim. But they won’t deter me.

As an up and coming writer, things have been rough. I don’t find time for writing. I MAKE time for writing. Life will give you every excuse to not write. You have to bypass the will to make excuses and write. Put words on the page.

Today, I hosted my fraternity Phi Rho Eta, Incorporated’s 9th Annual Mock Trial Competition. As the event’s coordinator, a position that consisted of finding participants, helping to raise money, finding a venue and all sorts of things, I nearly broke down. The anxiety almost had me. The event went well though. I would not have had it any other way.

I hope this piece helps someone find the courage to write their next line, next story, next novel.

#indieauthor #writer #selfpublish

Published by Professor J

Professor J is a professor, author, poet and screenwriter.

9 thoughts on “This Year So Far as a Writer

  1. I’m curious about your thoughts on having a formal education in creative writing and not having any education. I didn’t go to school. I just read anything and everything and I’ve managed to experience a modest amount of success and am generally liked by my peers. But I’ve always wondered if I would be a better writer if I didn’t drop out or if my work is better because I’m not constrained by a standard that’s not my own. How do you feel education has influenced your writing?


    1. Education in writing is different from training. Training comes from education. But education is not limited to books. U can educate yourself. The training then, if not formal, comes from continuous writing.

      U don’t have to go to school to be a great writer, even though the industry takes u more seriously, and u have better connections when u have formal education.

      Education at times has hindered my writing. When I could be writing a best-seller, I am to busy with assignments. On the other hand, it has introduced me to some very big names. U must pick your poison wisely.


      1. Ahhh! I see. I feel like the education might change my writing in a way that I wouldn’t be so happy with but I can’t say that with certainty. The connections, however, seems very worth the time. I have an old English teacher from before I dropped out who I still speak to and meet with who critiques my work and he’s helped me publish before. I could use more people like that.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: