We always hear that it's never too late to do something in life we want to do. That if the urge is there we should try it. Many of us don't. But when I was at Southern Voices a few weeks ago I met a woman who could inspire us all to grow and to keep after that dream.
A lovely woman, of a certain age, came up to me and started chatting. She was glowing with vitality. As we were leaving the author event she stopped me, opened my purse and dropped a book in. "Uh-oh" was my first thought. Another self-published book expected to be reviewed. I left it in my purse (others might have simply placed it on a table and walked away, but she was so nice I simply couldn't do that), and went on my way for the day.
I forgot about the book until the other day. I decided that before setting it in a dark corner of the bookshelf I might as well take a look.
How glad I am that I did! While this book isn't necessarily for public consumption - it's more of a personal memoir/journal to her grandchildren - I was actually grabbed by the first chapter. This woman lived a life and wrote about it with emotion jumping off the page. Then I flipped to the back - Louise had written her book at around the age of 84!
I sent her a little note - "It is an absolutely lovely memoir of your life. Vibrant in it's emotion. I felt your pain when Jerry simply disappeared, when your husband became tyrannical and when your son passed. I enjoyed learning about your accomplishments in life and the struggles you endured to continue to grow."
Louise teaches right here that you can go after that dream. She decided the grandchildren needed a book - so she wrote one. They will be so proud of her when they're older. Her children and husband and friends should be so proud of her now!
So the moral of this post - Keep after that dream - you want to write - go for it!
If you might be interested in the book I read, please go take a closer look at it HERE.
To continue in this vein, I'm refreshing a short composition I wrote a few years ago - I keep this on the sidebar of the Dew at all times.
What is a Writer?
What is a writer? This has always been a bone of contention between people with opinions.
Many believe that true writers sweat over their words, feel deep angst over every sentence. That they are only viable writers if they have no other interests, careers and nearly starve to death tapping out 2,000 words a day. The words must be deep, meaningful, full of mystery and knowledge.
This of course drives inexperienced writers to back off and and feel that they'll never be considered to be worthy of reading.
To this I say, "Bull."
Writing is pure enjoyment. It's expressions, dreams, memories, humor, desires and fears. It's free flowing thinking on paper. No writing should be labeled as too mundane, silly, odd or dumb.
We need our great historical novels, our short humor books, our love stories, our poems, our 3 paragraph stories.
All writing is important to someone, maybe a lot of someones. I personally wrote for years and really enjoyed those simple emails that came my way - "You made me laugh", "You made me cry", etc. No one ever said that I solved a mystery in life or wrote a great historical tome that would last for eternity - but those simple notes made my day.
This is why I started the Dew, beyond having a positive showing of the South - to encourage writers from all experiences and levels of advancement to feel comfortable sharing their work.
I think novelists should be able to throw out a pithy, humour filled page long story if they want. I think someone that has never sent any writing out for publication before should listen to their adult child who says they write good stuff. I think a 20 year old who thinks they might just have something should give it a shot.
The Dew is here for everyone, including myself, and I hope to hear from all of you!