I used to think that writing a book would somehow be the pinnacle of writing. And for a long time it was. Books escaped me despite my best efforts at beginning them. I’d sit down to put one together, feel daunted by the task, and not get past page one of a good idea.
Then last spring I drew on new inspiration after the loss of my brother and found myself standing at the top of that pinnacle finally compiling a book of poetry, prose and illustrations. Freebird Fridays was born, Cranberry Dusk and Lamentations of the Sea soon followed and where there once were no books, I suddenly had three, with more on the way.
What I didn’t realize- much like climbing to the top of a mountain- was that the moment I was finally standing on what I thought was the peak, I would see another mountain. That building a platform for yourself as an author, connecting with the right readers who care about and want to read your work, and developing relationships in the world of writing is a whole other set of hills to climb.
I’m learning as I go. Creating this new site is part of that. Trying to find a balance between self-promotion (if you know me you know how non self-promotey I am) and just plain old believing in my work and the light I’m trying to hold up in the darkness of this world.
I had this realization awhile back that it does no good to light a candle and then hide that light so others can’t find it. My books are my candles. My way of trying to send love and light and hope out into a thirsty world who now needs those things more than ever. My way of offering water to anyone who needs a drink and some medicine for their heart.
So I’ve been charting new hills. Learning a lot about climbing. And realistic expectations about publication and book sales. And meeting new people and making new connections and being braver about saying, “Here I Am! And I wrote this! You should read it!” And how there are always new pinnacles to be found.
How a couple years ago I was standing at the base of “Mount Write A Book,” and it seemed impossible to climb. And now I’m looking back over my shoulder having climbed that particular peak and focusing on new ones. How maybe someday I’ll look back to this particular point in time with a fond smile of remembrance for all there territory I’ve covered and all I’ve climbed since.
We can only be as tall as we allow ourselves. As far up as we dare to climb. As bright as we dare to shine. And while I can’t say that I’m standing exactly where I hope to someday be, I can say I’ve grown a lot on the way and that I’m pushing myself, in my own small ways, to keep reaching beyond to new heights.
I will get there when I get there- just like all of us on our individual journeys- we will get there when we get there.
And in the meantime, there is always the grace of this moment to be had.