Monday, June 7, 2010

Sometimes You Have to Stick Your Neck Out

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It's true.




"To Write" is an active verb. Thinking is not writing. Talking about writing doesn't count either. Blogging only marginally counts ;)


A while ago, I blogged about a conversation I had with a non writing friend. You can see it here if you missed it. It was hilarious and painful at the same time. When the conversation was happening, I thought to myself, "Tess, why do you have to tell everyone your dreams? Why can't you just play your cards a little bit closer to the vest?"


But, at some point, we have to step out of the shadows and onto the stage.

Dig deep for a bit of courage


Gather gumption


Stick our necks out


and claim our dreams


Who's with me?
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30 comments:

Michelle Davidson Argyle said...

With you ALL the way!

Michelle said...

I'm with you. Most people who know me are aware of my aspirations as a writer. I think it gives my goals more weight and makes me accountable for trying. After all, I don't want someone to ask "How's the writing going?" and then have to shrug and say, "I dunno."

Cindy said...

Claim our dreams! Yes, I love that part.

I like the picture of the turtle, too. I saw one today, sitting in the sun next to a lake I walk by sometimes :)

Tess said...

thanks, pals. I believe there is power in giving voice to our dreams. of course, we must allow ourselves to take time with it and not be unrealistic in the process .. but we will never get there if we don't say it first

Janice said...

Of course, but sometimes it does hurt a little.

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

I tell people all the time that I'm a writer. My husband tried to discourage this behavior at first because I didn't have a book deal, but now he tells people I'm a writer. I'm not ready to give up the dream...A lady at Walgreen's who know I write introduced me as a writer to a woman and her kid. The kid was complaining that he hated reading...LOL...I am a writer, successful or not...that's who I am. :)

Tabitha Bird said...

Stick your neck out, I say. Dreams need a voice before they become reality.

Wendy Paine Miller said...

Dream claimed.

Neck flailing in the wind.
~ Wendy

Piedmont Writer said...

We'll find out when I go 'home' for the 4th of July and tell the rest of the family I'm a writer. I know who I am, I doubt they'll care.

J.A. Palermo said...

I'm with you...sometimes.

If I can avoid annoying conversations with people who don't get writing I will -- at all costs.

Sharing what I do with positive people -- well now that's a different story!

Scott said...

I'm with you, but I disagree: thinking is writing, at least for me. Or, maybe I should state that thinking is part of the writing process. If not for thinking, where would our ideas come from? If not for thinking, how would I figure out that plot point won't work? For me, the thinking I do in my head, plotting things out, figuring whether something will work or not - especially lately - is all the writing I've done. Yes, sad but true. Still, we all have to stick our necks out there at some point. : )

S

Corey Schwartz said...

I remember that conversation! It WAS hilarious! (and painful:)

TOTALLY with you! I tell everyone I am a writer!

laurel said...

I'm with you. I've found avid supporters in seemingly unlikely people. I've also recruited members to both of my crit groups by talking writing and discovering another "secret" writer needing support.

Tess said...

Janice: yes, but it is a risk we need to take. thanks for coming over

Sharon: good for you! you are a writer :)

Tabitha: exactly

Wendy: how come you can always make me giggle :D?

JA: yeah, I still need to learn that lesson, but I'm getting better at it.

Scott: You are right, my friend (not surprising), but I'm referring to thinking about writing ... as in, "I'm going to write that novel someday". The active, plotting, musing that you describe is super important. Still, if we never put it on paper, we'll never get to where we want to be. Things always seem brilliant in my head and then, when I get them on paper? not so much. hahaha (that's painful laughter)

Corey: hi-ya there! Did you say it out loud before your first book was pub'd? I imagine once you have that little baby in hand, it might be easier? I'm hoping...

Tess said...

laurel: isn't it amazing how, when you share the fact of writing, others share their dreams? I'm surprised how many of my friends have writing aspirations (and, they'd be great at it, too).

Scott said...

Tess - check out my blog tomorrow. : )

Talli Roland said...

Definitely! Writing is not for the faint of heart! When we write, we're putting a piece of us out there for public consumption. *gulp*

Carolyn V. said...

I'm with ya! I think it's true. You have to stick out that neck, even if your neighbors keep asking you when that book will be out (a hundred times). Hee hee. But it's cool when people say how they admire me for trying to reach my dreams. Very cool. =)

Janna Qualman said...

Absolutely! Count me in.

Kristen Torres-Toro said...

me!

Susan Fields said...

I agree - I just wish the whole process didn't take so darn long. My twelve-year-old son has a friend who asks me all the time, "Is your book published yet?" I feel like a failure every time I have to tell him it isn't. I hope I have good news for him one of these days!

Molly Hall said...

Hallelujah! Thanks for the reminder. I'm a big believer in the power of dreams, and the power of speaking your own truth. Now I'm going to go shout it from the rooftops, "I'm a writer! And I love it!"

PJ Hoover said...

Writing is a lot about learning to stick your neck out and it spills over into all parts of life (which is good). Otherwise, I'd never have the guts.

Jackee said...

I'm with you! I'm a horrible card player... er... secretive person too. Everyone knows what I do, how I feel, and what I dream about. It's a good thing I'm a very consistent person or my poor family and friends would have to deal with some serious ups and downs!

One of my favorite poems is the Langston Hughes' one about holding fast to dreams. Your post made me thing of this and smile. :o)

Have a great Wednesday, Tess!

Jill Kemerer said...

Turtles! I love turtles. Aren't they cute?
Yeah, it's not easy admitting we write. It's even harder actually putting our work out there. But it's worth it.

Amy Tate said...

Tess, my best friend doesn't get this at all. I could eat her with a spoon, but she is constantly asking me, "why is it taking so long for you to publish your book?" Bless her heart - she even co-wrote a picture book with her husband and then self-published. She says, "We got ours back in three weeks!" Ughh. I finally reached the point where I don't go there anymore, lol! It IS intimidating and at times I want to throw in the towel. But every time I walk into a bookstore, I start shaking. I LOVE books. I love the smell of them, the feel of the pages, and the way they come in all shapes and sizes. I suppose if I can't write one, I'll end up as a cashier at Barnes & Noble when my kids leave for college. At least I'll be happy, right?
**wink

Heidi Willis said...

I love this post!! And you are right that saying our dreams out loud is like sticking our necks out. Everyone now wants to know when my next book is coming out. I have to tell them, "Um.... it doesn't just work that way." One book does not a Jodi Picoult make!

Shelli (srjohannes) said...

what if your head's been cut off? then what!

Mary Aalgaard said...

Yep. It's time. Some people will never understand. Everyone will have an opinion. But, in the end, we are claiming who we are and that is empowering.

Tess said...

You guys are amazing. Thanks for the encouragement, for the giggles and for the knowledge that I am not alone on this walk. That is an amazing thing.