When most people find out that I’m a published author, they are usually surprised. The reactions range from “Oh, I know someone who self-published something too” to “Wow, if you’re an author, why do you still come to work?” After a while, most tell me how impressed they are that I manage to find the time. I often get to share stories with them about their dreams, and I do my best to encourage them.
Of course, just because I write doesn’t mean it’s easy.
I’m an overweight guy in his forties with a kid, a wonderful wife and a mortgage. I have a full time job (which I happen to like), but I struggle with bills and wish I kept up with my lawn better. I’m tired when I get home from work. I want to watch the Voice, the Big Bang Theory, the Walking Dead, etc. I wish sometimes that I played an MMORPG or that I was good enough at shooting games to offer to play Call of Duty with the guys at work. I have a long list of things that need fixing around the house. If I just gave up writing, I’d have a lot more time and could join in a whole lot more conversations about what’s on tv at night.
However, I can’t give up writing. It’s my dream. Sure, I’d love to go and see a movie one day based on a book that I wrote. I’m pretty sure that will never happen, but I can’t let the thought go. I wanted to be a writer since I read my first comic books, like Incredible Hulk #200, Captain America and the Falcon #199, and Iron Man #89 (all vol. 1 just to date myself). I found a journal in 8th grade where I wrote that I wanted to be a writer when I grew up. I still remember my grandfather, who I call Captain Heckel, giving me a copy of Beowulf. It’s what I wanted to do ever since I discovered books. I want to write Lord of the Rings. I want to make other people happy, to inspire them, to lift spirits, to somehow improve the world a little bit.
I feel called to do it. It’s one of the reasons that I’m here. I’ve quit writing before, a couple of times in fact, but I can’t stay away. Story ideas live in my head. I imagine scenarios and characters. I could fill this blog with novel titles that have yet to be written, and I’m sure the list will be longer in a year. It’s my dream, and it fills me with hope.
I know that if I should be fortunate enough to live to a ripe old age that if my grandchildren or great-grandchildren ask me if I ever had any dreams, I’ll be able to say yes. If they want to know if I tried to pursue them, I’ll say I did. Success or failure, I’ll know that I tried. I’ve always believed that if you try your best, no one came blame you if you don’t succeed.
So, I’ll keep writing. I’ll do a little bit after my daughter goes to bed. I’ll write at lunch for fifteen minutes or half an hour. I’ll try to write a little in the morning or at night when I can’t sleep. I’ll diligently save the words, and slowly, but surely, novels will grow. And then, I’ll go back to them and rewrite and rewrite and edit and rewrite again. 🙂
I hope that everyone who reads this finds a way to pursue their own dream. If it’s writing, fantastic. If it’s painting miniatures, great. If it’s growing the roses that everyone on your street talks about or being the sort of fan of your local college team that everyone respects, wonderful. Dreams don’t have to be pursued full-time and even doing a little bit can make a difference. Just make sure that whatever it is that it makes you happy.
Okay, I’ve rambled a bit. Hopefully, I’ll have some time to write more blog posts. I’ll put another Freedom Squad Nanowrimo up tomorrow.
All the best!