Jessica Latham

There are times when an overwhelming energy, a force from within is so powerful it cannot be ignored. For me, that is writing. Writing has been a part of my life since I first learned how to write cursive, a sacred style of writing that is already fading into the past. For some of us, we started scribbling secret thoughts into a diary. I was one of those people. I had many diaries of many colors and shapes, mostly with locks, and sometimes just a spiral bound notepad where I could write my thoughts. I began with exploring my emotions; still to this day, a wonderful place for anyone to start writing.

I’m a writer who to loves to write. Some people write because they “have” to write – they chose the wrong career or, let’s say are working on a term paper – but that’s not me. I’ve (finally) chosen the right career and I actually love term papers.

I am a freelance writer, poet, translator, blogger, educator, motivator and whatever other title I prefer to give myself.

So how did I become a writer? When learning of bees in fourth grade, I wrote a piece of fiction about the adventures of Billy the Clumsy Bee, winning a creative writing contest for the state of Idaho. In seventh grade, I won a San Diego middle school’s mystery writing contest (even without death or violence in my story) of a young girl who was to discover who sent her a bouquet of flowers. My writing style expanded throughout high school and college as I received numerous scholarship awards and succeeded in various essays, cover letters and professional writing. To this day, I offer professional writing and resume assistance to professionals of all levels.

I’ve worked in Marketing, creating content for E&J Gallo Winery and Ernst and Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Program, transcribed and translated original letters from the nineteenth century in both English and Spanish languages for a project with San Jose State University; I’ve studied various forms of poetry and creative writing, and created technical documents and instruction manuals for an agriculture and winery software company among various other projects.

On specially printed-paper with fancy signatures stowed away in one of my file cabinets, I hold a BA degree in Spanish, Communications and Business, a certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language, and an MA in Spanish language, history and culture. I sometimes share this information to sound important at my husband’s fancy business events. Other times, I ditch the whole degree talk and go straight into telling strangers about my blog, rowdy prisoners, about daring to live with passion and love. (That’s when I know I’ve tugged at the Director’s wife’s heartstrings after three too many glasses of wine and far too many years spent with a non-existent husband.) I love to go on and on about how we can chose to spend our time doing something we love.

I truly do believe this. I do. But it comes with a sacrifice. Some people sacrifice time with family, others sacrifice where they’d like to live, money, health, and you know a long list of other things I’m sure. I sacrifice a steady income for days filled with freedom, joy and the dare to create something that will be published or used toward more of my writing goals. I’m not poor. I’m just creative. Sometimes I get paid, other times I trade services. But I’m not here to write about the money.

Another thing people like these days are lists of publications and proof that they don’t just write in their journals all day (like the ones I started with, which is something I think more people need to be doing these days anyway). So I’ll mention some of the journals (the other kind) and presses where I’ve been featured and organizations I like just so I appear somewhat important. NPR’s KQED Perspective Series, Tiny Buddha, Thank the Now, Tinywords and Tabata Times are a few places where my work’s been featured. I have expanded my style and network of writing by joining and participating in Poetry Center San Jose, Yukei Teiki Haiku Society, Women’s Writing Haven, Modern Haiku, Redwood Writers and various other writing organizations.

As a new mother who is fascinated by the blessings and lessons my child has awakened in me, I am inspired to write of my experiences. I am currently working on future submissions to Literary Mama, Brevity, The Sun, and Huffington Post while also working on a book about the journey through pregnancy. If you want to know more of my writing, please click around and see other articles, poetry, freelance projects and my specialties. Or maybe you’d like to skim interviews with local and global community leaders including Iranian-American poet, Sholeh Wolpe, Los Gatos Poet Laureate, Erica Goss, Entrepreneur Lee Rhodes of glassybaby and many other influential men and women of today.

Who knows, maybe you’ll like what you read. I hope so. Either way, I’m glad you’re here.

After all, you’re the reason I do what I do. You take the time to read my words, and for that, I am grateful.

Want to know more about me? Read more of my journey on my blog rowdy prisoners.

write to live. write with passion.