This is my first blog for Soul Mate, so I’m new to most of you. Honestly, I’m still sort of new all the way around.
In light of that, I’ll tell you a little bit about me. I live in the southern United States, and I’m probably older than you think I am. I have a husband who my friends have knighted as Mr. Perfect, and he pretty much is. (Seriously … he does his own laundry.) I have a day job, parents, in-laws, siblings, and a huge extended family. We’ve been through a lot lately: depression, broken bones, adoptions, new babies, extended illness, funerals, retirement…
Since I live away from my family, I also have a large network of friends. Best friends, close friends, friends I know in person, and those I know from online. Some friends I see daily, some I talk to regularly on the phone, and some I chat with in passing. A few I just met at the Romance Writers of America Conference in New York City.
My friends have been through a lot too: sending children to college, job dissatisfaction, struggling through their journeys both in life and in writing. Some are struggling with serious illnesses. Those illnesses make me think about all the other friends I’ve lost.
And I’m over here with a book under contract …
All these developments, have made me reflective.
First, obviously, it’s not all about me. There are things going on in my life that are more important than my book. I need to look up from my keyboard and pay attention. I need to listen to those around me instead of thinking about plots and conflict. Life is full of REAL conflict every day.
But second is that life is short – too short, and nothing should be taken for granted. Not the husband asleep in his chair, the family in another state, or the friend on the other end of the phone. And not that you’ll have time to write.
See, here’s the thing … several years ago (more than I care to admit), one of my high school English teachers told me I wasn’t creative. Since she was someone I admired, I believed her. As a result, I never wrote another word of fiction. I didn’t even take fiction classes in college. I stopped writing.
Until four years ago, when I decided I’d try. If I truly did suck at it, no one needed to know. And that first story did suck, because I’d spent years running from being creative. I didn’t have the tools. But the bug had bitten me, and I love learning new things – so I dove in head first.
And now I have a book under contract ….
The journey isn’t over. It’s only just begun. I’ll be learning new lessons about writing for the rest of my life. I could have started earlier, true – and I wish I had. I’ve wasted far too many years.
Because life is short.
What are your creative dreams? Are you pursuing them? What has been the most encouraging moment so far in your journey?