Monday, November 27, 2006
When we recently asked our readers what they'd like to see on the blog, one of you mentioned wondering about our mysterious pasts and how we came to be writers. Okay, maybe we don't have many skeletons lurking in our closets, but we hope our posts about pursuing our dreams this week will inspire you to make your own dreams a priority, whatever they may be.
Like most writers, I started out a reader. I know my mother read to us when I was little, but I remember becoming truly hooked on reading in my early teens. Being home schooled and living way out in the country, my mother would take us to the library "in town" twice a month. The librarians were always amazed because my sister and I would check out the maximum 12 books each time and my mother assured them we actually read each one.
I went to college as an English major, with the intention of eventually pursuing a Masters in Library Science. Life had other plans in the form of marriage and children after graduating with a BA in English Literature and a minor in American History. Despite being drawn to academic literary discussions, reading romance was my true passion.
It was actually a dear friend who put me on the first leg of my writing journey. Recognizing restlessness in me, she recommended that I attend a writing seminar being held nearby. Personally, I'd always thought my sister would be the writer in the family, because I could never live up to the papers she wrote in college. But my interest was peaked, so I went. Talk about an eye-opening experience! The author who spoke gave a test to the audience, asking true/false questions about our personal tendencies. Though totally unscientific, she said that if you scored 8 or higher out of 10, you were wasting a God-granted gift if you weren't writing in some way, shape, or form. I scored a 12 (there were bonus questions)!
Suddenly I knew that if I wrote anything, I'd want to write a romance. I went to the bookstore, read some how-to books, found RWA, and the rest is history. My only hope is that publication is one of the highlights of my journey. Even though I never thought of myself as a writer before that class, I now cannot view myself any other way. It was a part of who I am all along, I just hadn't recognized it yet.
Along the way, there have been many things that have helped keep me going, the greatest of which has been the wonderful women here at the Playground. But in those quiet moments when my heart wonders if publication is worth the hassle, I'm often encouraged by quotes that just seem to come my way. One of my favorite is:
There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.
A new favorite is:
Courage does not always roar. Sometimes, it is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, "I will try again tomorrow." –Anonymous
So today I ask you: What is it in your life that requires that kind of courage today? Do you have an unexpected dream for your life that gives it meaning and focus? Tell us all about it today!
PS: To kick off our final week of daily giveaways, I'm offering a Christmas bag to one of today's lucky commenters. It includes some Christmas candy and two books.