May 27, 2009

I am a Writer - Payne

My name is Kimberley Payne and I am a writer.

I won my first award for writing as a grade 4 student. I had entered the Legion’s poetry contest and won second prize. I remember having to stand in front of a small audience to read my poem – it was both freeing and frightening.

I kept a journal of all my trips camping with my family and my two-week stint in Quebec during a student exchange in grade ten. I still have these journals.

I also uncovered a romance story that I had written to amuse my girlfriend in high school. Each week, I wrote a new chapter with a new adventure. They are so embarrassing to read now as an adult!

In my dark days, I wrote poetry. I have kept many of these poems – mainly as reminders of how difficult life is as a teenager. Many speak on suicide and my continuous battle with depression.

Pen pals were seen as lifelines. I would write up to ten pages detailing my life and couldn’t wait to receive a new letter in the mail from around the world. I especially liked to read about my cousin’s life in the Netherlands.

I wrote for the school newspaper but focused mainly on creating fun things like word jumbles and crossword puzzles.

I wrote poems for special events like birthdays and weddings and anniversaries. My mom kept some of these, but I wish that I had kept my own.

But writing was seen as a hobby; something done for fun. I attended Wilfrid Laurier University and graduated with a Bachelor of Business Administration. I’m certain that my essays in philosophy helped my overall grade-point average. Some friends questioned why I didn’t major in Philosophy or Psychology instead of Business!

Upon graduation, I worked many temporary jobs until I landed work as a Career Counsellor. Again, my writing was helpful when working on case notes for my clients.

After six years, I was laid off, moved and started a new life. This included a new job – self-employment as a personal fitness trainer. I loved developing my advertising and marketing plans for the business and coming up with fun names for some of my workshops.

But still, writing was part of all my other jobs…not a job in itself. Not until I moved once again, left my business, my family and friends and went to Orillia, Ontario where I found God and found my true call in life. I remember the tear-filled afternoon in 2001 when the Holy Spirit impressed on my heart that I am a writer.

It was in Orillia that I attended my first workshop on writing, by the Canadian Author’s Association, called, “So you wanna be a writer” held at the Stephen Leacock museum. I was again in tears when I had to admit in front of a group that I was a writer. It was freeing and frightening.

Looking at your own history, are you a writer?


  1. Oh boy, can I relate to your story!

    I still have the first forty pages of the novel I began when I was twelve years old.

    Thanks for sharing your journey, Kimberley.

  2. Isn't it fun to look back through our past writing!


Thank you for taking the time to join in the conversation. Our writers appreciate receiving your feedback on posts you have found helpful or meaningful in some way.