The other day I was writing a guest post for the awesome Quirky Book Nerd, and I had an epiphany! I was trying to capture the essence of what it has been like pursuing a writing career. And these words just popped into my head: Trying to pursue a career in writing is like chasing unicorns. These elusive fantastical beasts that avoid being found at all costs. And right then, my brain exploded into a rush of ideas, which dovetailed into one of my deep desires, to encourage other creatives. Any dream we are pursuing, especially those rooted in the creative fields, can feel like we’re chasing unicorns. We read, study, research on what we need to do, we apply what we learn, we create, tweak, and repeat. Nevertheless our unicorns remain elusive.
So elusive that sometimes, we just want to quit, and sometimes we do.
You see. My son wants to be an author. The other night he wanted me to read over his latest chapters in the book he was writing and I gave him some feedback. He crumbled. He’s only ten, mind you. But even I, a grown woman, has shed numerous tears over this pursuit. And I’m sure I’m not alone. He sat there crying, saying he could never be an author. And in that moment of weakness, I had wished I had never started this journey sixteen years ago. Somehow, this insane desire to tell stories and take readers on adventures has taken seed in my son. And perhaps, if I hadn’t pursued this dream, just maybe he would have different dreams. Something, perhaps, a little more attainable? But how can I wish this? I am only deluding myself. I cannot deny this deep desire to create, to write. And I don’t think he can either.
So I was honest with him.
I told him writing is one of the hardest things to do. Second, to parenting, mind you. Ha! But I didn’t tell him that! Life is hard and full of choices. If we want it, we must fight for it.
And guess what? The next day he was back at it. Working on his story, rewriting the first chapter. He’s got a long way to go, but he is determined. And hopefully, with people speaking truth and love and acknowledging the challenge and encouraging the fight, maybe he’ll go somewhere with his pursuit in creativity. Of course, he might change his mind and become a police officer or an astronaut. The whole world is at his feet. Anything is possible.
As for me, I don’t know where my journey will go from here, but I know that it will involve chasing unicorns and encouraging others in their pursuit of their unicorns.
Oh, and dragons and mermaids, too. Can’t leave those out!
**If you’d like to read the guest post over at Quirky Book Nerd, click here!**