Melissa Stetten is a retired model turned writer, she’s written for the likes of VICE Esquire, HelloGiggles, xoJane, Style Con, Lady Clever, Crave, Arcadia, Aeon, and a bunch of others. So many of us are looking to change the direction of our carriers and it can be a daunting step to take. We reached out to Melissa to ask what life has been like changing direction and following her passions, this is what she said:
- What does the transition from model to writer look like, it doesn’t feel very typical?
It’s probably the LEAST typical thing a model could do. Transitioning to a career that requires thought and concentration from one that’s based purely on physical attributes is a stark contrast. I started writing while modelling, so it was kind of a relief to find something I could do when I retired from being in front of the camera.
- Where did your first paycheck as a writer come from and how did that come about?
I was approached by an editor to write an essay for Aeon, an online magazine, called Hot Girl #2. It was about feeling lost in a world that I never fully felt comfortable in. I was ecstatic when I received the payment. I could pay my rent for a month! After that article, I felt validated as an actual writer.
- What do you like most about being a writer?
I have good days and bad days (mostly bad) but when I do have a good day, it’s a GREAT day. If I write even a paragraph that I’m happy with, I feel successful. I was very quiet and shy growing up, and I’m always envious of great storytellers, so when I realised I could tell stories by writing I was hooked.
- Why do you think so many people follow writing as a passion?
Everyone has a story to tell. Some people do it by performing, others by art, etc., but writing can get extremely personal.
- What’s been the biggest influence as a writer?
This is so cliche but I love Lena Dunham. She’s currently my favourite story teller. I love that she’s honest and doesn’t hold back. I think honestly is very important in writing, and I respect her immensely.
- What does the process of writing a piece look like for you, from assignment through to published?
It usually starts with thinking I’m a terrible writer and I should give up. Then I drink some coffee and force myself to write anything, even if it’s total garbage. I get distracted and watch youtube videos of cats for hours, then I decide it’s time to stop and close my laptop. The next day I do the same thing all over again until I have something written that I don’t hate. I re-read it a hundred times, have so many doubts about it, but then send it in. Writing sounds great, right?
- Three pieces of advice for anybody looking to follow in your footsteps?
Lots of people are going to criticise you and want to see you fail. Writing is an extremely competitive business, and the only thing that will help you succeed is to just keep going.
Finally, what’s next on your Bucket List?
I went skydiving last year, which was at the top of my list, but I think next will be learning how to fly an aeroplane. I have no idea how I’m going to do that, but I’ll figure out a way.
If your interested in any more of Melissa’s comings and going head over to her blog: www.prettybored.com where you can see some of latest posts and to up to date with everything FLUX NEWS related sign up to our newsletter.