As I watch the sun go down in the southwestern Alberta sky, a beautiful first day of January slowly succumbs to dusk. The sky is still clear here and is an unseasonal -2 degrees which allows me to open my window a crack to let in the fresh holiday air. I am multitasking as I play a game and monitor the posts coming through my Facebook page, reposting those interesting tidbits that build a newsworthy feed (and “liking” every horse picture, too).
I take my time today as I ponder the direction of my first blog of the New Year. My mind is a blur with the possibilities. I could also work on one of the numerous projects I have on the go – personal and publishing. My own resolutions are clear: to do what’s “write”, simply stated. Over the past couple of years, my focus has been diverted from my own work to that of my clients and colleagues; this is not a bad thing, for it is what I am destined to do. It is how you keep learning, promote the craft, and progress on your own writing journey. It is also the mandate of my publishing company as we head into the second half of my third part-time year in business. Things are going well but it is not without its own self-inflicted wounds. I have several works of my own awaiting attention and there always exists the underlying desire to do more and submit more for outside consideration. My commitment to my blog is an ongoing passion because this is where I connect with all of you out there, my fellow writers. Here, it is more than just the ramblings I commit to my journal, things I don’t share out in public, things I provide a disclaimer for in case anyone reads those words post-mortem – “please be kind and don’t judge until you walk a mile in my shoes.” Certainly, these fertile emotional fields are the breeding ground for words to be shared with some revision. It has borne many an article, many a verse, many a line. My blog is my public journal that endeavors to share my writing life and how life affects it. My easy-going day is a treat but it is now dark as I still contemplate. My window is closed but the year of opportunity lies open ahead.
It is not that I don’t have anything to write; in fact, just the opposite – I have so many words I would like to express and so many directions my sharing could venture. My first blog of the year often holds promise for what lies ahead with encouragement to keep on writing while reflecting on the things that matter most – memories. Looking back over 2012, it brings those bittersweet extremes life is known to throw at you just because you live it, into high focus. It is a conundrum best described in the immortal lyrics of country singer, Garth Brooks – “Our lives are better left to chance, I could have missed the pain but I’d of had to miss the dance.”
Life hands us the experiences of loss and gain, hope and failure, happiness and sadness. It can appear to be in larger helpings for some, almost never to others, or an ongoing thing with this and that so much so we beg “enough already.” I can speak for no one but myself when I recount the past year and the effects events have had on my writing and my life, in general. I received great accolades and suffered great loss. I accomplished goals yet dealt with frustration. I felt the elation of happiness, yet spiralled to the emotional depths of despair. There is no going back for a do over so it is something I need to embrace when I recall 2012 – what can I do better? What can I treat with greater compassion? What can I change and what has changed forever?
Through this social media family and my own, I have connections with great minds who prophesize their own 2013 future in as many ways as there are numbers. I like the suggestion that we take little bites off the months as we chew through this year. It makes swallowing what life has in store for us so much easier. Little goals, little steps, little by little we move forward. Keep the big dream in mind but focus on each and every day. To look too far ahead you miss the chance to experience everything along the way. I have lofty goals, oh yes – I recently proposed to a friend that we plan the trip to Italy we have talked of so fondly for some time now. And 2014 it will happen, with a short stay in Stratford Upon Avon to visit my hero.
This post is not without its underlying desire to encourage a bright writing year ahead. It is necessary to keep your writing goals posted close to your heart, for only another writer knows how vital they are to your journey. We write because we must. We write because it is an inborn, innate, inherited passion that will not go away even if you ignore it. Oh, you can waylay your desires if you are easily distracted but your muse will not allow you to miss out on your true calling in this life. Seek the support of those who share this passion; be true to your own creativity and be strong enough to stand against those who would disarm you of your pen. In time, your own mettle will prevail, your ink will flow, and those around you will see you for who you are meant to be – a writer.
In this proclamation I take with me my most cherished memories. I hold them close to my heart so I can remember what it is that is most important. I have the support of so many friends and family, colleagues and clients. I claim this right through the words channelled by my muse, through my admiration of others who share my love, and my mother, who watches over me now from beyond. Despite my pain, there is hope as I dream big and move forward. Deep down I know it will still never be the same but in my heart I know I am doing what I am supposed to do with my life.