When my kindergarten teacher bent down to my toddler level and said the immortal words, "What do you want to be when you grow up?" I said: A writer. I want to be a writer. I want to change things.
I always wanted to change things, make them better. I wanted to enlighten people, get them to connect. I wanted to make a difference.
Eventually this passion for writing led me to attend journalism school, and pursue my passion for words professionally. Aside from playing rock music, writing songs and acting, I always knew writing was my calling. Something in my bones always pointed me back to it, no matter what I was focusing on. The words would always be there. That, and music.
After working for a few newspapers, and writing fiction, poetry and all kinds of other stuff, I realized that I was a starving artist. Completely and utterly transformed when someone got something out of my work.
It led me to study the art of Gonzo journalism, basically what I write on this site. I like to help people, and use my experiences in life, good or bad to get the job done. There's something authentic about it, something that is genuine and real.
It's one thing to use Wordpress, Twitter or Facebook and shout into the void, with no hope of having someone call back...and it's another to have a conversation.
After countless articles written both in print and online, I found myself at a crossroads. My passions led me to studying acting, playing in rock bands and losing a bit of my way. I was so fargone that I had quit writing entirely. I didn't want to force myself to think anymore. I wanted to be numb, aloof. I turned into a monster, all stuffed up and indignant. Nobody could talk to me. I wasn't myself. The pages were blank.
I was on the verge of being completely lost when I first started writing on Vingle. It seemed like a fun, new place. Not as stale and old as Wordpress, and not as much of a hassle to get seen. Because whether we acknowledge it or not, as creators of any kind, we want our work to be seen. We want to be acknowledged. We want to make a difference.
Every other service I tried to use to write, and have my points come across, as trivial as they were, seemed to toss me aside like yesterday's internet garbage.
Although I don't see myself as the next Hunter S. Thompson or Jack Kerouac (although, I'd like to be), I do think I have a unique perspective on the world, and I want to encourage others, who have similar thoughts. I want to show them that they can be fearless and truthful.
I want to see people grow and change. I want the world to change. I want us to be the voice of our own generation.
To me, Vingle has shown me that change is possible. I have met so many inspiring people here, all from different backgrounds. Some of them I will never meet in real life, but that doesn't matter. All that matters is that we've connected, in some small way.
And through comments and messages flung from the far off corners of electronic waves that don't technically exist, I found my voice again. I made friends. I made connections. I feel better.
I love Vingle, because I get to login each day and connect with thousands of people. My words are splattered all over the walls of the internet. My voice is touching people in a way I haven't thought possible. My words have been seen 4 million times. Million. That's an astronomical figure for a beginning writer, someone who sits in their own head all the time, and doesn't have many close friends can't possibly be seen and heard by four million people.
It's just not possible, but with Vingle it is. With Vingle we can connect in an entirely new way. With Vingle I can have friends from Australia, Pakistan, The UK, and even Korea. With Vingle I can read other budding writer's work, learn about myself and their struggles.
I can educate myself. I can geek out with my friends. I can laugh and cry. I can connect. We can connect.
Connecting is what matters. Even though we can't always get that out of "real" life, or our friends, families or our relationships, we can find something unique and fun on Vingle. Even if it's a distraction, or a hard reality. Even if it's an exposing of everything that makes you hurt ...it's a connection. It's what makes us human. Vingle is for humans.
I just wanted to issue this semi-formal thank you, although it's really a call to arms. Honestly, I love that Vingle is a place for free thinking, acceptance and friendship.
The writing doesn't have to be polished or profound, it doesn't have to meet a word count or deadline. It just is. It can just exist. The words speak for themselves. You don't need a publishing deal or a million followers, you just need to write.
I'm really happy to be apart of this community, and to be able to connect with so many people each day, even when real life kicks my ass...I know I've got Vingle behind me.
Writing is something that everyone can do if they put their mind to it. And on Vingle, that is the reality. Anyone and everyone can create and reach people. That's a beautiful thing.
So if I've learned anything over the past few months on Vingle, it's that nothing is forever, and we can pull ourselves out of the darkness if we want to. There are probably hundreds if not thousands of other people who feel the exact same way. Vingle brings people together.
Vingle is the club that everyone can get into, and nobody is left out. Vingle can be your family.
I wanted to tag some of the people I've met through Vingle, and extend a small challenge. You guys have had a profound impact on me. I want to know why you guys love Vingle. You could write two sentences or two pages, it doesn't matter!