“How I Quit My Six-Figure Job to Become an Instagram Influencer,” by Hannah Lawrence

Jul 17th, 2019 | By | Category: Fake Nonfiction, Prose

Food? Water?? Shelter?! Sure you may need these things to survive, but since when has surviving made you cool?

My name is Rebecca Pebbles and I gave up everything to pursue the esteemed career of Instagram influencer. Here’s my story.

Getting Started

You may be old and therefore wondering: what the heck is an Instagram influencer?! Well put on your glasses and crank up those hearing aids because I’m about to tell you!

An influencer is an Instagram user with a large and established audience. These users are credible and they have the ability to persuade their fan base, just like Troy Bolton in High School Musical. “We’re all in this together!” Right, Troy?!?! #firstcrush #callme #callmerightnow.

In other words, influencers are fricking cool (and it’s not just some made-up millennial title, mom!!)

I knew I was a legend, but I had to make sure the world knew it too. In order to make a good first impression on the social media universe, I needed a captivating bio – one that reached the masses, a bio that was equally fierce and it was philosophical – and, oh boy, did I find one: “Fricking follow me or die! HAHAHAHAHAHA #justkidding #love.”

My Passion 

Every influencer has something they are passionate about, such as fitness or music. But last time I checked everyone in the fricking world likes songs so you’re not original, Beyoncé. I needed a unique interest to set me apart from the pathetic, lesser influencers. After pondering the seven things I like in this world, I decided my niche would be rocks I found on the beach. 

The First Post 

It was time to post my first picture. I was nervous, but butterflies in your stomach mean you care and you’re on to greatness – I bet Martin Luther King Jr. felt the same way when he was writing his dream speech #important.

I grabbed my best walking stick and headed down to the beach.

I’ll admit, I was overwhelmed by the sheer number of rocks at the beach. They were everywhere!!! But after 17 hours of scouring on my hands and knees, I found the perfect stone. It had the circumference of a bocce ball and the weight of a premature foal. I snapped a picture and posted it alongside the caption: “Just snagged this beauty. #rock.”

Getting Followers

Gaining a following on Instagram was proving to be harder than I expected. I had already commissioned my close friends and family to follow and like all of my posts; however, these people are indifferent dumb dumbs. I wanted real people to control.

The time had come for me to commit my entire existence to Instagram. I said “bye-bye” to the condo I worked years to buy and “smell you later” to my six-figure job. I moved back in to my parent’s basement and immediately began cutting and gluing letters out of magazines onto construction paper to create artsy promotional pamphlets which I handed out at Dundas Square.


It was a typical Sunday. I woke up from a three hour nap, logged into Instagram and saw that I had a new follower #blowingup. I clicked on the notification and immediately puked. The follower went by the username @RockLover1. I clicked on @RockLover1’s account, praying they liked death metal and not the natural mineral substance. I puked again. Not only was this user a rock enthusiast, but they were also a beach rock enthusiast!!!

Hunched over my toilet, I briefly considered murder.

After upchucking the remainder of my lunch I decided against violence, as it would tarnish my reputation. Instead, I chose to kill my enemy with kindness. I followed @RockLover1 back, liked all of their pictures and commented things like “cool rock” and “I’m hard like a rock” on their posts.

Stuck Between a Rock and a Hard Place (get it?!?!)

I was learning that in order to become an influencer I had to eat, sleep and breathe rocks. This was proving to be increasingly problematic for me as I no longer had the funds to eat out, nightmares kept me awake at night and I’d developed a severe case of stress-induced hair loss. I refused my parents protests that I should return to work and get a wig.

“You’re 42!” My mom screamed.

I cut her off and told her rocks were my parents now #fosterchild.

Despite my sacrifices, I still wasn’t profiting. How did these influencers do it?! Kendall Jenner makes $300,000 per post, so why was I continuing to pawn my mother’s jewellery to afford bus tokens to the beach?

The Lies

Six months into my journey to stardom, things were looking up. My mother finally acknowledged the importance of my mission and stopped distracting me, I had 104 avid followers (two more than @RockLover1!!!), and I was averaging seven likes per post. I was on the road to ultimate social media/world dominance when out of nowhere, BAM! It hit me.

After 39 straight hours of scrolling through my Instagram newsfeed, I went blind from excessive HEV light exposure. I felt like I had been crushed beneath a landslide. What I loved most in the world had turned against me #sad.

I reached out to my fans, but to my utter surprise, none of them had been influenced to donate to my GoFundMe account. Even more horrifying, some had turned to @RockLover1 for their daily beach rock updates!! #rivals #whereisthelove #icantsee.

Alone and blind, I sat in what I think was a hospital room.

It’s a fricking scam, I realized. It’s so easy to get caught up in the perfect lives these influencers appear to live, when in reality nobody’s who they seem. In fact, these influencers may be blind.

I was crushed #ouch.

The Aftermath

The next day, in what my doctor called the greatest miracle since Katy Perry and Taylor Swift stopped feuding, I regained my vision. As it turned out, blindness was not the only ailment I’d incurred while living in the damp crawl space of my parent’s unrenovated basement. Scurvy rotted my gums, parasites ravaged my small intestine and I had a merciless yeast infection.

I crawled to the cafeteria, as I no longer had the ability stand up straight, and caught a glimpse of myself in a spoon. I was horrified. The face staring back at me looked more like Dobby the Elf than the once confident business woman I used to be #HarryPotter #Icoulduseawizardrightnow.

As I wallowed in my sadness, I heard a knock at the door.

“Enter, subordinate!” I commanded.

It was my mother. Despite all of the hatred and rocks I’d hurled at her, she still came to visit me. She loved me more than any of my followers did. At that moment, I realized how crazy I’d been acting. Here I was trying to literally take over the world when all I needed was already surrounding me. I apologized to my mom and asked if I could have my job at the family business back. She said yes, as long as I agreed to delete Instagram and stop calling her my subordinate.


So there you have it. My journey to Instagram influencer status was treacherous and not nearly as extravagant as I imagined. I learned a lot along the way but most importantly, I learned that if you want to influence people, Facebook is the way to go.


Hannah Lawrence is a 23 year old standup comedian and writer from Toronto. In the short time since she began performing, Hannah has established herself as a passionate and rising talent. Hannah is a regular at the Corner Comedy Club and she has been selected to perform at The Edinburgh Fringe Festival, The NXNE Festival and The Durham Region Comedy Month. Hannah’s standup has appeared on CBC’s The National and she was nominated for Best Newcomer at Toronto’s “I Heart Jokes Awards.” Hannah has written for Exclaim! Magazine and The Interrobang, and she is the recipient of the David Goodman Award for Comedic Excellence.


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