Since I cannot move to Denmark in the foreseeable future, I need to find new sources of joy--as a writer--where I am right now. But what if there's plenty of joy already around me, and I've been ignoring/overlooking it?
I never saw this quote until Cathy Hall shared it on a post. Sometimes I look at writers who have filled literally shelves of books in bookstores and I wonder, Why not me? Other times, I compare myself to another writer in my critique group, and wonder why I am not as prolific or am puzzled why I'm not published as frequently as they are. I should be happy for their success (I am, I truly am) and I should also be happy with the progress I'm making, instead of looking at it like it's a competition.
And to savor that joy that surrounds me, I'm going to celebrate things like:
- A great beginning. There are times when I share a piece at a writing critique meeting, and my fellow writers say things like, "That first paragraph really drew me in," or "You had so many rich images in your beginning, I felt like I was there." Hey! I crafted that opening. I should smile and bask in it for a moment.
- Batting around ideas. When I get together with writing friends, invariably someone will mention something--a memory or an anecdote--which immediately causes me to think Oh! That reminds me of... I could write a piece about it. Ideas come to us when we least expect them. For example, a fellow writer mentioned her daughter's tattoos, which poked my muse in the arm. My muse reminded me, "Sioux, you could write a memoir piece about your son's ink." And I did...
- Getting back to a dusty WIP. After procrastinating and making excuses, diving back into a piece you love, a manuscript that keeps calling you--well, it's satisfying. It's almost like coming back to an old friend.
What is a simple pleasure you enjoy? A wannabe-Dane wants to know.
Sioux Roslawski is a middle school teacher, a freelance writer, a rescuer of dogs, a mother and a grandmother. She's working on comparing herself less to other writers and searching more for the hidden joy in life. If your interest is piqued, check out her blog.
|This is a selfie of Barry Lane--a writing guru for teachers-- and
me. I'm so technologically inept, Barry had to take the selfie.