Live the season, Writing

don’t give up your day job

I just realized there are probably a zillion posts and articles on the internet with that title. Normally, I would check to see and tell you just how many. But it doesn’t really matter because you are reading this one for some reason, and I don’t want to waste your time with facts . . .

This is the second in my series (a book for all seasons) within a series (Live the Season) which is not in any way a blog “inception” because that’s not really what that word means. Unless by “inception” you do not mean “dream within a dream” but rather “the beginning.” (And now I need to go back and watch that movie again to see if the person/people who gave it that title were actually far more brilliant than the ingenious plot . . .)

Anyway . . .

This post is about a book that has been especially inspiring for this season of my life.

Actually, maybe it IS after all an “inception” because it sparked my desire to read all sorts of autobiographies/memoirs about writing by people who write. Which I will write about later . . .

The book is Quitter by Jon Acuff and you can read all about it on Amazon.

But what it did for me was to remind me that:

A. I am my own patron of the arts.

I have no Medici family to fund my dreams. Many great artists of the Renaissance had to paint portraits of spoiled duchesses in order to have the means to paint the images in their souls. None of that analogy is in Quitter and I am no Botticelli . . . it’s just the thought that has worked for me when I begin to dream of doing nothing with my days but writing whatever and whenever I feel like it.

B. No one has time and yet everyone has time.

You have the perfect amount of time each day for the things that matter most. The key is spending time on those things. Few would boldly declare, “Today, watching television for two hours was one of the most important things I need to get done.” Yet that’s where we sometimes spend entire evenings.

The operative word in the phrase “enough time” is not time. It’s enough. And the truth you should accept is that you will probably never have “enough time to pursue your dream. But every day somebody somewhere is making magic with the less-than-enough time he has. So can you, if you stop focusing on the amount of time you have and start focusing on the amount of tasks that really matter. — Jon Acuff, Quitter

And so, instead of wallowing in the fact that I had to use all my creativity on writing for others for pay, I just went ahead and started writing the books in my heart.

Which led to blogging, because writing books was taking too long and the internet was where I went a decade ago to find help when I needed it most. I figured there were people out there like me looking for help, too. I  tested out how much I could say about addiction and recovery and life without shrinking back in fear and to put our story together in words and see if it was a story worth telling to more than a roomful of people who knew us.

I also blogged to re-find my voice — because when you are a copywriter, you write in the voices of others, for them, for their purposes and goals.

C. Embrace your day job and learn through it.

Not just copywriting, but mothering and being a wife. All the work I am called to do lends itself to the art of writing if I listen and let it.

The goal of this book is to get you to do what you love, with the life you already have. — Jon Acuff, Quitter

There’s much more, but it’s Saturday and I have a messy room to clean, a grocery list to make and a family to pay attention to. I’ve written more than enough for today. See? Learning.

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