Do you remember the moment you knew you were meant to be a writer?
I’ve read about people knowing at an early age that writing was their purpose. Their early calling compels me to take on a Scrooge-like demeanor because I’m not that writer.
I’m a late bloomer and that places extra pressure on my shoulders because I always feel like time’s running out.
Master the craft by yesterday.
Destroy word counts everyday.
Finish your book this year.
Becoming the writer you’re meant to be is often a twisted story. And much like A Christmas Carol, the story can be filled with ghosts, hauntings and voices from the past, present and future.
These are mine…
THE GHOST OF WRITER’S PAST
Every weekend, the ghost whispered, “just write.”
The ghost convicted my soul because it knew my past.
The ghost knew I used to love writing bad poetry everyday. It knew I spent years recording my dreams and nightmares while attempting to master lucid dreaming. It knew I used to journal the story of my life to help me better understand my psyche.
So the ghost haunted me because it knew I’d gone back to school for a business management degree I secretly hoped I’d never use. It knew I’d fallen deeper into Corporate America. It knew I hadn’t picked up a pen or spoken to the page for years.
I spent my mid-to-late 20s silencing the ghost’s voice because I didn’t know what to write anymore. But then the epiphany struck in the bathroom.
I was washing my hands when the ghost proclaimed, “You’re going to write novels.”
I met my eyes in the mirror, processed the ghost’s words, and said, “I’m going to write novels.”
THE GHOST OF WRITER’S PRESENT
Today I procrastinated before typing any words. I blamed my nasty cold as a rare excuse to postpone my sacred writing time.
Then I looked to David Blaine’s Real or Magic for inspiration because I respect the power of his mindset. I adore his commitment to his craft. I love how he’s constantly trying to evolve illusions and go Beyond Magic.
So while seeking inspiration inside Blaine’s magical creations, the ghost called me out. It whispered, “What are you doing to evolve your story and craft?”
I clammed up. Minutes later and no words fell onto the page.
I wondered why I hadn’t created any of the new visual storytelling guides I’d brainstormed? I wondered where my published story was at? I wondered when I would stop procrastinating and just finish the umpteen half-done blog posts that I’d started?
That’s the ghost inside today. It’s always present and ever-haunting.
THE GHOST OF WRITER’S YET TO COME
We haven’t yet entered 2017, but the ghost already visits me in the New Year.
The ghost questions how many words I’ve revised during January. It asks me what kind of blog posts I’ve shared with the world in February. It demands the head count of how many people I’ve helped by the end of March.
The ghost tells me that 2017 must be the year I write more words than I thought possible. It alerts me that 2017 must be the year I finally publish my debut novel. It informs me that 2017 must be the year I donate more time and money than ever before.
The ghost warns me that 2017 will be the year more people criticize me. It assures me that 2017 will be the year more people give me a chance. It reminds me that 2017 will be the year I double down on the writer I’m meant to be.
The ghost compels me to look toward 2017. Because the ghost presents a window into tomorrow that drives me to create beyond yesterday and today.
THERE’S STILL TIME
I don’t know how to exorcise the ghost haunting the story of my life.
But maybe I shouldn’t.
Because just recently, a voice told me there’s still time to become the writer I’m meant to be.
But then another voice screamed I’ll have to make more sacrifices to achieve my purpose. And that voice told me what those sacrifices must be.
The sacrifices scare me more than the ghost.
Except I’m committed to fulfilling my purpose and transforming what others call “a dream” into my reality.
Maybe you are, too?
So maybe you should welcome the ghosts from your past?
Maybe you should summon the ghosts to challenge you inside today?
Maybe you should request the ghosts visit you throughout 2017 so you can become the writer you’re meant to be?
Happy hauntings, holidays and more.