Finding my focus

A little over a year ago, I decided to investigate my passion for writing. Actually, I was kicked into gear by a good friend. She heard me complain, just about enough, about someone else’s pursuit into writing.

“You know, you’re just jealous. Why don’t you take some action for yourself?”

Maybe those weren’t the exact words, but I remember jealous and take action. I started off with small commitments: work through The Artist’s Way, start a blog. I signed up for National Novel Writing Month, thinking what have I got to lose? Then, I passed the NaNoWriMo 50,000 word benchmark, and I fell into a frenzy of sorts.

I took two online writing classes with Ariel Gore, back to back. I submitted several pieces to lit mags, reworked a few more, joined some writing sites, started another blog. Been reading on writing. Been staying up too late.  Shut down my laptop after midnight, only to open it five minutes later to change the last line of a late night blog post.

In such a frenzy, I lose sight of my reason for writing (not to mention, sleep). So, I recently made a list of my little successes in one short year. I held off on submitting a few pieces that, a week ago, I thought I just had to get out there. And, I honed in on this quote yesterday:

Remind me each day that the race is not always to the swift; that there is more to life than increasing its speed. Let me look upward into the towering oak and know that it grew great and strong because it grew slowly and well.” –Orin L. Crain

I don’t know anything about Orin L. Crain. But, I love this quote, and this gentle reminder, that becoming a writer is only a race in my mind.

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3 responses to “Finding my focus

  1. I love that quote! Thank you for posting it. And it is so timely for me. I spent the last 3 days volunteering at the Willamette Writers’ Conference 1/2 days and attending 1/2 days. There were workshops, manuscript consults, practice pitches, and actual pitches with agents. The pressure to publish and the pressure to write a certain way. All good, yes, the feedback and — well, the pressure. The pressure is not why I came to writing.

  2. Great reminder that the pressure to hurry success can ruin the journey. I strive for the ever-elusive happy medium between taking on enough to keep me moving forward and taking on so much I feel like I’m drowning.

    Thanks for the quote.

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