I always wanted to be a writer. I suppose I still do, in a way, just that, if I pull it off, it will likely be due to my more professional work in adult education.

But I really wanted to be an author. I just couldn't get out of my own way.

I did manage to finish two novels.

The first one was, basically, a fictionalized version of my post-college life, which I thought was just true, emotionally, but I re-read it recently, and boy, there's a lot of ugliness in it. Not just in the prose, which is pedestrian but better than EL James, but I had no idea how down I was clearly feeling at the time, and my despair was all over my writing.

I am not sure what I hoped to get out of it. Really unpleasant stuff happens in the book, and I can say now that I was trying to condemn it, but I'm not sure I did so strongly enough.

If I had ever been published, I might have been seen as a gross Brett Easton Ellis type, even though I was trying to critique that sort of thing (and failed).

But anyway.

I wrote a second novel in Korea (well, I wrote most of the first one there too. I had a lot of free time).

That one was better, but I ran out of gas. The first 100 pages is pretty good, aside from my Big Ideas being kind of simplistic (I was still only 23).

I should have explored the world more. But I tried to put every idea in it, on top of trying to be more clearly progressive than the first novel.

It's good they never saw the light of day.

But I want to write again. Really just for fun, I think. I feel I've got something to say, perhaps more in the fictionalized real life vein of the first novel but without the unexplored anger and sadness that squeezed the joy out of reading it.

I know I'll soon be in school and out of time. But if I can manage a few pages a week, and work on it over several years, it might end up being the work I always wanted to create.

We'll see.


Justin Gerald

Age: 28 Hometown: NYC Location: NYC Career: Education Undergrad: Princeton Grad: New School Likes: Cooking, Baseball, Socializing, Parks, Pop Culture, Feminism Loves: Traveling, Running, Lifting, Trivia, Teaching, Equality