For many years I wanted to become an author. I took classes to learn how to write short stories, teleplays, and film scripts. I wrote several sit com (situation comedy) scripts, and even found an agent to properly present them for me. No one was interested. Then I started writing screenplays and completed two romantic comedies. No takers for those, either. Two of my short stories were picked up by a small magazine, and that was enough to keep me going for another couple of years. But overall, no one was interested in my writing, and the process of writing each day was growing tiresome. Finally, around 1985, I gave up my dream of becoming an author and never looked back.
For the next twenty years I went on about my daily life. I went into real estate and had some success with that. When I went for my residential appraisal license in 1989 I had to write some short narratives on the properties I was using for my examples, but the writing was dry and to the point. As an appraiser my writing was limited to boiler plate paragraphs and fill in the blanks statements.
In 1986 I had returned to school to get my teaching credential. Very little writing was required for that, except for on the teacher’s exam. I had to write a three page essay on an event in my life that had turned out very differently than planned. I wrote about taking a road trip across the United States, and how we had become lost while driving through Texas. I received a passing grade on this essay, and went on to teach in the classroom while I was still doing real estate after school and on the weekends.
My students were from around the world, making English was their second or third language. Math was the easiest subject for them to master, and writing was the area they became most frustrated with. I encouraged them to write every day, even on the weekends, even if it was only a paragraph or two.
When I decided to resign from teaching and turn over my real estate clients to others in 2005 I wasn’t exactly sure what the future would bring. Little did I know at that time, more than five years ago, that I would become an online teacher and mentor, and that writing every day would be a natural part of my life. I was becoming an author, even though I wasn’t aware of that fact right away.
As I sit here this morning writing this post, I realize that when I was writing years ago my joy came from having written. My joy these days comes from writing, and that is very different. We must do the actions that feel right to us in the moment, while still taking the time to find out exactly what we are passionate about. I am so thankful that I finally had enough faith and belief in myself to pursue the life that I am so fortunate to be living today.
What are you passionate about? What would you do every day, if money were not in the equation? What can you do to enrich the lives of others? Answer those questions and you will find the joy in life that is so precious and worthwhile.