“That’s all for today’s video you guys! Remember, my name is Sasha Sanders and don’t forget to like, comment, and subscribe. See you next time!” I leaned forward to turn off my camera and ring light. I have a low budget set in my room made from anything that I can find: a tapestry from the basement, a ring light from Five Below, and the camera my parents bought me for my birthday last year.
Honestly, I think that’s all I really need for now. I have a few hundred subscribers on YouTube, and its only up from here. The best thing is, when I go off to college, I’ll have a lot more creative freedom. I’ll be able to do actual vlogs and interview different people. Right now, my life is too boring to be vlogging about anything. People wouldn’t care about what I do on a day to day basis.
“Sasha!” I heard my brother banging his fist rapidly against my door.
I got up quickly and threw the door open, causing him to stumble forward a bit. “What do you want Cain?”
“Mom and dad said come down for dinner now or you’re not eating tonight.” He tried to snicker, but his braces made it look like he was spitting instead. I know. He just got them put on yesterday; he can barely move his mouth.
“Hang on,” I said trying my best not to roll my eyes, “I just got done filming.”
“Mom! Sasha said she can’t eat cause she’s shooting a video!” He laughed again before sprinting down the stairs. I tried to stay on his tail but I’m not as agile as his ten-year-old body is.
My mom caught Cain’s body as soon as he entered the kitchen. “What did I tell you two about running in this house? You’re too old to be acting like this. Sit down, it’s time to eat.”
Dad was already sitting down at the table, engulfed in whatever was happening on the news. I don’t really watch the news; they stress me out too much.
“Mom, I told you! Sasha said she doesn’t have time!”
“Boy if you don’t stop lying on me!” I yelled back at him.
Mom came to the table with both of our plates. “Cain don’t yell in this house! And don’t lie neither, before I make you wash your mouth out.” She went back to the stove to get her and Dad’s plates. Chicken and rice, just what I needed. “Sasha, what were you working so hard on upstairs?” she asked after she took a seat across from me.
“Sasha has her own Youtube channel!” Cain said before I could get my words out.
“Yes, thanks Cain,” I rolled my eyes for real this time.
Dad looked away from the news for the first time that evening. “YouTube channel? You mean the people online that do crazy dances?”
“No dad, that’s TikTok. I’ve told you about my channel before, remember? I react to stuff already on the internet.”
“Kids watch that kind of stuff?” he huffed.
My mom chewed her chicken slowly, like she was in deep thought. “Actually, I think my coworker said something about her daughter doing the YouTube thing.”
I sat up straighter in my seat. “Really? Is she successful yet?”
“I don’t know. Can you really make a job out of something like that?”
“No,” my dad chimed in, “She needs to still go to school and get a real job. Whatever money you get from the internet can’t be enough to sustain you forever.”
“I mean, it depends on how popular you are.” I said, eating another spoonful of rice.
“You still need to get your education, no matter how popular you are.”
“I know dad. I was going to do that anyway.” I sighed.
My mom scrunched up her face. “I still don’t know about this. I don’t like the idea of my child being judged by the internet.”
“Its fine mom! It’ll just be a little hobby of mine, and I’ll turn the comments off.”
Mom held the same skeptical look on her face. “Ok, but your father and I have to watch each of your videos before you post them.”
After a few more videos, with parental control, my channel had gained a few more subscribers. I had my brother takes some pictures for my banner and profile picture. I also put the link to my channel on my other social media accounts. Instagram and Twitter are great ways to get the word out. Even though I don’t have that many followers, the ones I do have are spreading the word for me.
At school on Monday, I was approached by a fellow YouTuber while I was at my locker.
“Hey Sasha. How’s it going?” His name was Brett. He had been on YouTube for as long as I had known he existed, with over 100K subscribers to prove it.
“I’m doing pretty good. Can I help you?” I said, adjusting my backpack on my shoulder.
“Actually, you can. See my friend pointed you out the other day and told me that you did YouTube too. I think it would be great for both of our channels if we did a collab.”
“Oh. I don’t know about that. I would have to ask my parents and – ”
“Forget about your parents, it is your channel, right?” he asked.
“Yeah, of course but- ”
He interrupted me again, “Great, then I’ll DM you the details on Insta. Don’t be lame and ghost me,” he put on a fake pout, “I would be so hurt. See you on Saturday.” Then he slung his backpack back over his shoulder and walked away, waving behind him.
Brett’s content is not exactly the type of stuff my parents would like. They might shut my whole channel down if they see I have a video with him. Rated R story times, stupid pranks, and TMI gameplays overran his channel. That was what he was all about; things that my parents didn’t want me to do.
But they don’t really have to know do they? If I tell them I’m going to a friend’s house, they’ll believe me, and if the video is never posted on my channel, they won’t know about it. That way, I can get some screen time on a larger channel. Its all about connections. As long as I don’t get caught, they’ll never find out, and my channel will benefit. It’s a win-win situation.
That afternoon, my mom came to pick me up from school right after she got off of work.
“Hey mom!” I said as I jumped in the back of the car, “Where’s Cain?” I asked, noticing the lack of noise.
“I had to come here the street way; the Interstate was backed up. So I ended up here first instead of the elementary school.” She shrugged shoulders, glancing in the rearview mirror at me. “How was your day at school?”
“Did you learn anything new?” She tried again.
“Glad to know we’re sending you to school for something.” She rolled her eyes and then focused back on the road.
I took a deep breath and swallow my spit before talking again. “Hey, mom? Can I go over a friend’s house on Saturday?”
“Jayda. We’re going to watch movies.” Jayda is my best friend; she wouldn’t mind vouching for me if need be.
My mom put on her thinking face for a moment. “I don’t care Sasha. But, you have to do all your homework for the weekend before you go over there. Will you have a lot to do?”
“Mom, I don’t know,” my tone coming out more heated then before, “Its only Monday.” I felt my phone buzz; I dug in my backpack to find where it was at.
“Fine, don’t get no attitude with me, little girl.”
I rolled my eyes before unlocking my phone. I had an Instagram DM from Brett.
Brett: Meet me Saturday at 8 at my place. 1645 Everett Dr. We’re doing a Q and A video.
Me: Bet. I’ll be there.