For as long as I can remember, I’ve always wanted to be a writer. It didn’t matter what it was, as long as I could take my ideas and put them onto paper, I was ecstatic. I was that kid in school who always went above and beyond with projects because I loved being able to share the information I had learned. While my peers were complaining about having to write essays or narratives, I was overjoyed. Writing those things allowed me to express my ideas and creativity in a way I enjoyed, so while everyone else moaned and groaned and begged the teacher not to give us the work, I immediately jumped into the assignment. However, my real passions are creative and investigative writing. I find it easy to lose myself making up characters and stories, and I can spend hours writing down information I find interesting. I believe my love for writing stems from the fact I’ve been reading my entire life.
Growing up, I could read novel after novel like they were children’s stories. I found it easy to breeze through a book with 200 pages in a matter of days. As I got older, it grew harder and harder to balance reading and writing with schoolwork. I was constantly stressed about school and grades, and felt pressured into believing my education was the only thing that mattered. After my sophomore year at Mary Persons, I hit a point where I was stressed about school that I felt physically and emotionally drained. It was like nothing mattered anymore than getting good grades. I realized that focusing on nothing but school and leaving no time for other things in my life wasn’t healthy. So I decided to focus less on school and more on myself and my emotions. I would come home and do my homework or study for an hour or so, but then I would dedicate the rest of my afternoon to the things I loved, reading and writing. I managed to keep my grades up without stressing to the breaking point, and I was able to have the “me time” that allowed me to regain my sense of purpose.
I have lived in Monroe County my entire life. I’ve attended Monroe County Schools since pre-k, and I graduated with honors from Mary Persons on May 24. Growing up here has been a wild ride. I have learned what it means to have people who care about you and your dreams. I have gained friends and lost them. And I have been able to grow into the person I am today by studying the society we live in. While I loved being able to grow and learn here, I have always considered myself to be a “city girl”. I find myself now comfortable surrounded by bright lights and constant city noise than quiet, small town living. It’s my dream to live and work in Atlanta, and I am trying to start building my path to accomplish that dream.
I found out about the opportunity for an internship at the Reporter after my stepmom sent me a post she had seen on Facebook. I applied with the idea that it would help me find out what it means to be a journalist. I am earning a more in-depth look into our community, and I am hoping to experience things I normally wouldn’t. By doing this internship, I am hoping to get a hands-on experience in studying the way journalists report on current issues, events, and people. I am hoping it will help me with my intended study in college, as well as with my future career.
In April, I was accepted into my second choice school, Valdosta State. My intended major of study is English, and I’m going to be on a journalism track for editing and reporting. For many years I was intending to study creative writing, but around Christmas -- with a bit of a push from my aunt -- I decided I would much rather become an investigative journalist, though I plan to continue working with creative writing on the side. I am hoping to minor in either History or Mass Media Communications. But for the next eight weeks I’ll be here. If you have a story idea for me, email to email@example.com.
Bailey Storey of Forsyth, a 2019 graduate of Mary Persons, is the summer intern for the Reporter. She plans to attend Valdosta State in the fall majoring in journalism.