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Focus On Me

October 13, 2011 2 comments

One day I found myself without cable or an internet connection, and I wondered what I could do to pass the time. I had read every book on my bookshelf several times over. Which was about 75 books. I had even read my 15 e-books many times. Tired of reading the same books, I needed some more. Since spending a bunch of money on new books wasn’t really an option at that time, I did the next best thing. I sat down to my computer and started creating several stories.

I actually have always liked writing short stories, and going back months later and reading them as if I didn’t write them. I generally write the type of stories that I like to read. Although, I must admit, reading your own work is not the same as sitting down with a good book and getting into the storyline. Back in the day I briefly flirted with trying to write for a living. Of course I changed my mind.

That technology-free day led me to deciding that I needed another hobby, and writing a full length book would be it. I knew I wanted to write something slightly different from a lot of the books I had read. I just didn’t know what it actually was that I wanted to write about. So I just wrote whatever came to mind. Then I started keeping a notebook handy so that I could jot down ideas all day long. One night I woke up out of my sleep with this idea for my book. That’s the main book I have worked on ever since. In about a month I had written about 45,000 words, and then I hit a brick wall. The entire last chapter that I have written, I never liked from the moment I started typing it. I have yet to sit down and erase it, and write something else. I think I felt overwhelmed. I ignored my book for an entire month. Haven’t written one word since the beginning of September. I have however been reading books about writing books. Ideas keep pouring in about what to rewrite, omit, and add to my book. It’s a lot, but it’s exciting.

The other day it was raining and storming, and I finally proclaimed that it would be the day I got back to writing. Except my power decided to go out. Being without electricity for 24 whole hours let me see that I need to get busy. I really feel like storytelling and just being creative period is something that was a gift to me from God. A gift that I let lie dormant for so long.

When I was younger I had artistic abilities that even amazed me at times. Instead of doing anything with it, I focused my attention elsewhere. I have a knack for making things. I guess they call that being crafty. People have asked me about jewelry that I have made myself, wanting to buy it. Instead of doing something with that, I focused my attention elsewhere. I even have natural talent for doing hair. Yes, hair. Something I feel also involves creativity. Instead of doing something with that, you guessed it, I focused my attention elsewhere. The worst part about focusing my attention elsewhere was that it was NOT what I wanted at all

Back in July, when I turned the big 3-0, naturally I assessed my life. I asked God to give me focus. He did. I decided that come hell or high water, I was finally going to do something that I loved. I am D-O-N-E focusing my attention elsewhere. I’m looking at what I want, and I am grabbing it.

No, I am not a full-time writer. I wish. Yes, I have a regular job. I’m also about to go back to school, but I love writing so much that I am going to make time for it. Wish me luck. I hear that’s one of the main ingredients to being successful.

I have to clarify though, that I am not someone looking to write thinking I will get rich from writing some half-ass story, and plastering on Kindle or Nook. I’m going to write because I like it. If monetary success comes with that, great, if not, nothing changes for me. I love to create, and so I will. I think once I have invested some time in this, honing my skill, I will get in the long line of trying to seek a book deal. I read the blogs, I read authors stories. I realize it may never happen, but that’s not going to stop me. In fact, it inspires me. All the authors that write on the side, or are starving artists because they do what they love inspires me too. I have always wanted that type of passion about something, but like I said, I was always looking in the wrong places. Thinking about money, and what job pays the best guaranteed pay checks. Many people in the medical field can certainly attest to going into a certain profession strictly for the money. I don’t want to do that anymore. Of course i’ll keep working to pay my bills, but writing is now my outlet. My stress reliever.

After deciding that I want to try my hand at writing books, I have SO much more respect for authors. Like I said before, I have been a reader my whole life. I can remember reading Dr. Seuss and later ‘Tales Of a Fourth Grade Nothing’ and so on. However, I never put much thought into what all went into creating the book. My hat is definitely off to authors who did this with typewriters, and before then, pens.

I consider writing a dream deferred. If anyone out there has put off doing something that they really enjoy, you know where I am coming from.

Elle A.

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