Yes, I’m a writer. For better for worse, whether I ever see a dime for my work or not…I’m a writer. I’m also 35, which is the perfect age to have a mid-life crisis-what am I doing with my life-freak out moment. Which is, well, sort of what I’ve been doing internally lately. I’ll comfort myself by saying we’ve all had/are currently having those moments. Right?!
Please don’t get me wrong. My life is pretty great considering what it could be, and possibly what it almost was at certain points. I have an INCREDIBLY supportive, loving and understanding husband, the best kid in the world (I know, I’m biased), I live where it’s warm, I have a job where I’m allowed to work from home, and I’m pretty healthy most of the time, at least physically. I’m very blessed.
But my writing is something that takes a back seat most days. And most days it probably should. Obviously my priorities lie with my family and my paycheck. We all have responsibilities. But we also have dreams and desires, and my dreams, (like anybody else’s) are not so easily crushed. I’m not a terribly disciplined writer these days, but I never forget about it. Not a day goes by that I don’t at least think of the various stories I have in progress or my characters, or what a great feeling it was to get acknowledgement of my work. (Honorable Mention from Writer’s Digest for my short story “Dandelions.”) So as much as I’m tempted to say, “Forget it, I’ll never be a REAL writer,” I just can’t. I’ve known some of my characters since before my daughter was born. They’re a part of me and the urge to write will never go away.
Why this sudden declaration? I’m glad you asked. I read a blog by fellow writer, Jeff Goins. He’s got a lot of useful and inspiring information. Some people and their work just speaks to you. He’s one of those people for me. Right now, he’s conducting a 15 day writing challenge in which I’m participating. I urge you to check it out too. Day 1 is declaring yourself to be a writer.
So there. I’ve done it. Now the whole world knows. Or at least the 3 people who will read this. And that’s fine. Leading up to participation in this challenge, I came to a realization. It’s something I knew all along, but as people do, I made excuses. And some of them may have been valid, some not, but the only person who can really do anything about your life, is you. Just like Dorothy with her ruby slippers, who could have gone back to Kansas at any time (even though that would have been a super short story) if she’d just clicked her darn heels together, I can write. And I don’t need special shoes, a special place, a lady in a pink frock and magic wand (though that would be awesome!). Nobody is going to do this for me and I’ll never get rid of the stories and characters bouncing around in my head so I’d better just write this stuff down and see what happens.