GROW UP: VIRTUAL BOOK CLUB
What is the Grow Up: Virtual Book Club?
I wanted to produce this virtual book club to try and share what it feels like to go through your early mid-twenties when you genuinely have no idea what you are doing with your life.
Because in your mid twenties there is a real sudden expiry date situation where you go from feeling one day that you are still potentially able to get away with buying a student ticket for public transport to wondering the next day why on earth you are still getting fucking public transport. Half of your friends are saving for a deposit and the other half are still doing ketamine on weekends. It’s a weird halfway house age.
The virtual book club is a fictional story about four mid-twenties friends who are trying to “grow up.”
This story is going to be released week-by-week via email. It’s designed to be a book club that you can actually keep up with. And, if you’d like to ‘chat’ about the book, you can do this via our Facebook group.
Scroll for the full prologue, but first, join the club. It’s free.
Grow Up, The Prologue
In your early mid-twenties you try to learn the skills that your own parents had consciously made money to unlearn; like how to use eggs as a dinner ingredient.
My best friend Chloe said she expected to be “murdered” at work for the rushed job she did on a pitch deck that went out. Her roommates are “probably dying” of salmonella from the chicken she’d undercooked. She wondered if her “addiction” to the smell of petrol was related to the fact she hadn’t read the latest update on the China/America trade deal. She confided that she’s “forbidden” from ever being in control of travel arrangements over what happened “last time” at the airport with her boyfriend and an almost missed flight. There are people for whom her style of self depreciation doesn’t sit well – usually older people that sense some kind of condescension from it, as if Chloe, in exaggerating her own minor (and non-existent defects), is doing it to too obviously spare the feelings of the less accomplished. But that’s because they have their shit together. That early mid twenties itch is scratched. It’s like when a Fyre festival disaster level trip ends and you’re back home in your comfort zone and you think “Who am I kidding? That wasn’t bad,” and look up flights for next year.
Then there are more contemporary questions, like, is my Communications and Arts degree a complete waste of money? Is it worth the time? Are using plastic bags ok politically? Is it true that the paint commonly used in houses like mine contained dangerous amounts of lead? Is it wrong to spend more on make up than fresh food? Is it possible to be confident, presentable, rounded, happy and successful while studying a degree that leads to a dying industry while working 32 hours a week between an unpaid internship and a bar? Is it possible to make almond milk? For all queries, my friends are the only social cultural resource I reference.
What is the early mid twenties scratch?
It’s wanting to be something, be successful, be happy; but having no idea what that looks like and how to get it.
We are such opinionated creatures. We don’t want the ideals of another imparted. To hell with that! We don’t want stores to tell us what we like. We know what we like. We have brains. We don’t want to be told what job to get. We want to find it ourselves. We believe in the power of crystals but not in the advice from our fucking parents? We won’t eat vegetables from a can but will take a cap on a ‘special occasion’.
We believe in the power of crystals but not in the advice from our fucking parents.
So, with a little self depreciation to soften the edges, I want to share my journey getting from university into a job, into another and into another; and the mistakes and wins along the way.
A note from the author.
I want to be brutally honest about what it is like ‘finding your way,’ so this isn’t a story about someone who has ‘made it’ and telling you their story in retrospect. It’s either a story of someone who worked really hard, did everything right; and then didn’t get anywhere. Or the opposite! You’ll find out.
The Footnotes was built to help readers find their next step. We have hundreds of amazing profiles and stories that you can read when you stop and think, “Holy-Shit-I-need-to-make-a-decision-about-my-career, and I have no choice but to educate myself right-now,” but then you read someone’s story and you think, “wow, I want to be them, but ‘now what?’
So this story, Grow Up: The Virtual Book Club is about sharing how it feels finding your path and what it’s like when the friends around you are faced with the same stage of life.
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