Like so many writers, I began writing from the moment I was able to hold a pencil in my hand. But was I talented enough to make a career out of writing?
To find out, even though I was 36 at the time, I went back to college, signed up for the most difficult writing instructors I could find, and plopped myself into their classrooms. And I learned that no matter how much talent I thought I had going in, the knowledge I gained from taking those college courses helped me immeasurably to refine my technique and master my voice.
Though I used to have odd dreams about algebraic equations in the stratosphere (yes, really) and though I couldn't understand WHY I had to take classes in which I had no interest, I never regretted my decision to go back to school and, as a matter of fact, I still marvel at how well I did. I raised kids, worked two jobs, and still managed to handle a full-time course schedule!
The great thing about earning a college degree is that no matter what field interests you, you can write about it. And when you are too busy to attend traditional schools, you can always make time for online schools in virtually (pun intended) any field.
Say you want to become a nurse and write about your experiences. Online msn programs offer certification and licensing so you can earn your Masters of Science in Nursing.
Or obtain an online finance degree and become a business professional. With the economy suffering from so many upheavals, periodicals and online web sites need qualified business writers.
Business management certificates offer even more opportunities for writers. Six Sigma training online, for instance, was originally developed by Motorola to help people identify and repair defects in the manufacturing process. Writing skills help customers and management alike understand the entire manufacturing process.
Criminal justice courses, legal or paralegal courses, religious studies, education, health care, and technology are all areas that contribute to the wealth of information writers can access to find work in a particular niche.
So do you need a college education to become a writer? No, but you should educate yourself on the proper use of the English language and discover more about the subjects that interest you. College gives you an edge that allows you to write, not only what you know, but also what you don't know – with the added assurance that your knowledge has been expanded beyond your comfort zone.