We’ve reached the mid-point of the year and I have to wonder how we got here so quickly and how I’m doing on my goals. Not goals or resolutions really, but each year I set up my More or Less list of what I plan to work on during the year. The goal, if there is one, is to always be improving.
Some years work better than others. Some years things change completely.
This is one of those years.
I’ve known for some time that I’m a writer and that I want to make a go of this professionally, full-time. I’m not there yet. But I’m making progress. Finishing reading Stephen King’s On Writing has been both encouraging and disheartening. I wish I’d had it right out of college back about the time he was first publishing Carrie. But I didn’t. I can’t live in the regrets.
My reality is that, while I probably knew this in high school, I’ve always wanted to be a writer. I just had to take some detours along the way, perhaps to gain the life experience to have something about which to write. But along the way I’ve also wanted to be (and in some cases, have been), a political consultant, a meetings and convention planner, a graphic artist and a missionary/minister. Oh, and an actor.
While I can’t do, or continue to do everything on that list, I can do some of them. And, perhaps more importantly these days, I can write about all of them.
Funny though, after reading King’s book I was convincing myself that I can’t be both a blogger and a serious writer/novelist. Then the first thing that pops up into my news feed this morning is a post about why I should be blogging.
The bottom line is that I should be writing. Lots. Every day. But that’s hard to do. Still, as King points out, if that’s my passion, I’m going to try to find the time.
I tried this morning. I didn’t make it up to write, but I made it to the gym for the first time in several weeks. So, there’s that.
Last August, I set a goal to finish my novel (or one of them) and have it ready for submission for publication by the end of this August. I’m not going to make that. Instead, I’ve modified the goal to have my first draft done in time to review it whilst at the beach.
Where was I?
Oh yes, the novel. I’m making progress, and at the same time trying to figure out using Scrivener. I may get the draft done before I figure out Scrivener, but I like what I’ve seen so far.
Why the delay in the book?
Partially because life just happens. Partially because the writing that is currently paying me has taken precedence. Until I write that first best seller, it will.
But I also had another pleasant distraction. After several tries I was cast in a local production [CAT Theatre’s And Then There Were None]. I’ve been acting and performing at West End Assembly of God for almost 15 years, but in the last few years I’ve tried to branch out, auditioning for several shows. My first success was last summer in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. Encouraged by that, I kept going to auditions, until I got cast.
Then I got cast again. And again.
Truth is, since January I haven’t had a week without rehearsals for the next production. That sort of hit me last night as I realized we’re three weeks out from Footloose and I had scheduled an audition for another show that starts rehearsals in mid-August. That show would run right up into rehearsals for Glorious Christmas Nights.
Glorious Christmas Nights is a commitment and remains my first priority (see ministry above). Granted, the fact that a local production of Fiddler on the Roof overlaps GCN this year does pain me a little. Just a little.
But, back to that audition. I cancelled it this morning. I need a break.
I need to concentrate on what I know was confirmed to me last summer while meditating and praying on the beach.
I am a writer.
And, now that I’ve reached senior citizen status, I need to get busy with that. I figure, assuming I do get my butt out of bed and to the gym and that I do try to be healthy with food choices, that I’ve got maybe a good thirty years to write.
Technically, with this current project, I have 41 days.
That doesn’t mean I won’t continue to act, and do missions work and maybe even some politics (although the whole political process is currently pretty high on my disgust meter). But writing is the focus.
And no, I’m not quitting my day job. Not yet anyway. But, to paraphrase Tina Fey paraphrasing Sarah Palin, I can see retirement from my house.
While I like the prospect of not “having” to work, I’ll never fully retire. I’ll always be doing something.
Hopefully, I’ll always be writing.