How an Accountant Becomes a Writer

Seriously? Do I look like an accountant?
How does an accountant become a writer? Well, I never intended to be an accountant. When I was in high school, I never dreamed I’d go to college. It seemed like something my lower middle class family wouldn’t be able to afford. In high school, I took courses with the plan to be an executive secretary. When my father told me he could manage to send me to college only months before I graduated high school, I was stunned. I certainly had no idea what I wanted to be when I grew up.

A general business degree seemed like the closest curriculum to being a secretary, so I enrolled and listed my major as general business. Of all the concentrations in general business, accounting made the most sense to me. At its basic level, it was simple. Asset = Liabilities + Equity. You couldn’t go wrong with a balanced equation like that. Okay, well, trust me, accounting isn’t always that simple. Sometimes we accountants have to get...creative. Accounting seems like an analytical, left-brain sort of thing to do, doesn’t it? One of my friends from high school told me at our ten-year reunion that she always knew I’d do something like accounting because I was so good in math. Uh, no. I wasn’t.

When I graduated from college with an accounting degree, I said I would be the most atypical accountant there ever was. Well, I'm not, but I might be coming pretty close.

I think there’s always been a deep well of inclination inside me to be something else, some more. I’ve always had the urge to creatively express myself. When I was in high school, my friend Brenda and I read every Harlequin romance we could get our hands on. Those romances inspired me. The ah-ha moments got to me every time. You know, those moments when the hero and heroine realize they love each other and can’t live without one another. That moment. Tugged at my heartstrings. I wanted to write something like that. So I wrote my first romance when I was in high school. Seventeen pages on school-ruled paper and an obvious rip off of the last romance I’d read. I don’t even have that story any longer. Just as well. It sucked.

When I was in my twenties, I tried writing songs. I can tell you right now that my lyrics never had the depth or complexity that my daughter’s lyrics do. She amazes me. Truth is, I was never meant to be a songwriter. Most of what I wrote will never see the light of day, but there was one song I thought was pretty good. I’ll share the lyrics with you at the end of this post. Once again, I tried to write a novel because I’d read so many Robert Ludlum books that the fast-paced, suspense-filled adventure with a hint of romance captured my imagination. At about the fourth chapter, I realized I lacked the skills to write such a novel and my suspense manuscript digressed into...well, a comedy. A spoof on the action adventure genre. I gave it up, fearing my efforts lacked credibility.

In my thirties, I was too busy being a part time accountant and a full time wife and mommy to do much of anything else. But then, I hit my forties and all that creativity that I had suppressed and the need to express myself just sort of burst in my mind. You see, I had this daydreaming habit. That kind of habit can be a bit...unhealthy if it goes too far. Thankfully, before it became a deep psychological problem, I turned all that daydreaming into a dream. I remembered the writing I had done when I was younger and realized that was a perfect outlet for my daydreams.

Now I call those dreams inspiration and don’t feel quite so guilty about spending my thoughtful times indulging in them. I spent a decade churning out one manuscript after another. I will always have something on my hard drive to edit and polish for the purpose of publication. And I keep coming up with new ideas. I’ll never run out stories. Not in this lifetime. So here I am with six books available for purchase and three more to come by the end of 2014. Seven more planned for 2015. Nope, I don’t plan to stop living the writing dream.

And that’s how an accountant becomes a writer.

Here’s the lyrics to that song I promised you. It’s call Cold December Morning. PS—When I wrote it, it wasn’t December. It was March. And no one has ever left me like that. I’ve been married to the love of my life for thirty plus years. So, no, this isn’t about my life and I don’t know where it came from.

Cold December Morning

Whisper to me softly
the things I want to hear.
Don’t tell me that you’re leaving.
It’s the thing that I most fear.
Don’t tell me that our love is cold
and gray just like the dawn.
On a cold December morning,
don’t say our love is gone.

Can you tell me truly
our love has been a lie?
Do you want to know the answer?
Do you even wonder why?
I keep clinging to the hope
our love’s not made of stone.
On a cold December morning.
don’t say our love is gone

Your bags are packed and ready.
They’re waiting in the hall.
Can you pass the moments of our life
still hanging on the wall?
Can you turn your back on all we had
and all that’s meant to be?
On a cold December morning,
will you come back to me?


  1. Your story sounds remarkably similar to mine, in that I too started off with an accounting degree. Best wishes to you for a successful career in writing! =)

    1. Thanks for stopping by Suspense, She Writes, Shelbie. I've found there are quite a few of us accountants in publishing. Wishing you success in your writing as well.

  2. It seems to me that you are good at whatever you try! I have enjoyed your writings and glad that you are continuing with that dream. Mrs. Ellis would be proud. I wonder where she is and if she has read any of your work?

    1. Thank you, Melanie! I haven't heard anything about what happened to her. She could be anywhere in the world. I hope she would be proud of me. I'm not sure if she would remember me. That was a few years ago, you know. :)


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