The rules of the blog demand the kind of honesty that is uncomfortable because the focus is inwards. It is an unflinching look inside at what has prevented us from being as successful as we want to be.
It is a spotlight shining on the good, the bad and the ugly. It is where you see the parts of you that have aged well and those that have…not.
But before we can go there, before we can get there we have to take a moment to ask, “What sort of success are we talking about?” That is because without asking the question there is no possible way to answer it intelligently.
And the answer in this particular case is multifaceted. It is both personal and professional.
â€œif you expect to succeed as a writer, rudeness should be the second-to-least of your concerns. The least of all should be polite society and what it expects. If you intend to write as truthfully as you can, your days as a member of polite society are numbered, anyway.â€
â€• Stephen King, On Writing
Jack The Author
Jack is a professional writer who has written for multiple publications on a variety of topics blah, blah, blah. That is all true.
I earn my living as a writer and I enjoy it but the truth is I am not doing the kind of writing I dream of doing…professionally speaking that is.Â I enjoy my job and I enjoy a lot of the writing I do there but the dream is to become an author of fiction who makes his living writing stories.
That is what I really want. I want to be able to just let the words flow from my fingertips and have millions of people pay real money to read my words. Not because my ego needs the adulation but because my wallet does.
I want to make enough to live that luxury life we see on television and in movies.
Do The Work
The next question/comment I have is to ask myself if I am doing the work it takes to turn my dream from fantasy into reality. The answer is…kind of.
I have a checklist I can run down that I feel very good about because I have turned water into wine.Â I have carried the world upon my shoulders and convinced Atlas to take it back.
Personally and professionally I have done things that I am quite proud of. I can look my children in the eye and tell them that when life got to be exceptionally difficult I found a way to get through.
I fought back and figured it out and we are better off and on the move upwards.
There are lots of good things going on.
But does that mean I am doing the work.
â€œYou canâ€™t be brave if youâ€™ve only had wonderful things happen to you.â€
â€•Â Mary Tyler Moore
Mary Is Right
Mary is right, if all you have known is easy, happiness and joy than there it is almost impossible to appreciate what life is like when you have to work for things. We can talk about whether it is fair to blame the rich who were born into money and wealth but from an outside perspective life seems a bit easier.
When you have a billion dollars behind you it is easy to start a business. It is far different when you don’t have that.
But the question of bravery doesn’t address the question of whether I have been brave in chasing my dream. It doesn’t apply any sort of metric or standard to whether I have done the work to breathe life into my unwritten books.
I can say that in the face of danger I haven’t flinched. I have looked it in the eye and stared back, but only in some areas.
The time has come to ask and answer if I am willing to do the work and if not, why. I have those answers but for now I am going to let them set because I think it would make a great follow up.
What about you?
Are you dreaming your life or living your dream?