Mr Bojangles

Passion

Let passion be at the centre of your life.

Let passion be at the centre of your life.

Do you have a passion? A passion to write, to paint, to create something the world needs? Have you followed that passion?

My passion started in year one at school when I opened my first reader. Who were the people on the page and what was their life like? It sparked a curiosity in me that has been with me ever since. In year four I walked into the library and I found rows upon rows of books. Intimidated by seeing so many books, I stepped cautiously into that world of silence. My pulse raced as the different coloured spines drew my attention. The more spines I looked at the more overwhelmed I became. How I was ever going to read all those books? My teacher assured me I only had to read the ones I was interested in and it would be a good idea to read something outside my interest every now and again as I grew older, she said.

I took her wise words to heart and I lost myself in the world of words, characters and foreign lands. This passion for reading has led me to write and now writing is as much a need for me as breathing. The simple task of sitting at my keyboard and typing words or using a pen, which I often do, puts me into a different level far away from my everyday life. You could call it escape, but that's what I want to do: help my readers escape from their everyday struggles and take them on an emotional journey where they will become good friends with my characters so that they live in their hearts for a very long time.

My next novel, Mr Bojangles is the sequel to African Hearts. I've been writing this story on and off while I wrote Dusty. Justin and Kizza floated into my mind every now and then reminding me their story wasn't complete. I pushed them back saying I wasn't ready, but they insisted it was time, so here I am enjoying being with them as they take the next step into the future out of their village, Gumboli to Bond University at the Gold Coast.

My process with this novel has been different. I've made notes whenever Justin and Kizza have entered my conscious and taken time to write a few scenes. This week I looked at these scenes in detail and discovered they don't fit the story I want to tell. These young people aren't just learning about medicine, they are learning about themselves and growing in ways they had never thought. They are young people with loving hearts and the desire to be loved by their peers. This need for acceptance challenges them in ways that have surprised me. Their presence is so strong now they have overtaken the story showing me their journey into the future instead of me writing the story.

My passion for writing this story is well and truly on fire and is all consuming so that I now can't not write the book. Has your passion taken hold of you and consumed all of your waking time? Is it a passion or is it something you think you'd like to do because you've seen others doing it? A passion will grab you and it won't let you go no matter how hard you try to push it away. A passion demands attention and you had better give in to it and follow it, otherwise you will be miserable. Are you feeling lost and irritable and unable to focus? I used to be like that when I was in the world of numbers. It has taken me a long time to take that numbers shirt off and put on the words shirt. It feels good in my words shirt. I've come home and I've settled in with Kizza and Justin and I have accepted they have as much to teach me as what they will learn on their journey.

So what's your passion? Are you following it? What's stopping you? Start making small changes toward your project and eventually you will find your passion shirt is just the right fit for you. I'd love to hear how well your shirt fits in the comments below.

 

Banished to Antarctica

It's been a while since I posted and prior to that my posts have been spasmodic. The reason for this is that I have been on an amazing journey into my writing self. I liken it to being banished to Antarctica. I allowed my writing critic, Drakar, to have control of my head and he did some serious damage to my writing confidence that resulted in me thinking every word I tapped out on the keyboard or scribbled on a page meant nothing. From time to time, every writer has doubts about their work and how it will be received by readers. My doubts overwhelmed me paralysing my writing so that for a long time I couldn't think words at all.

Believing my writing days were over I went back to the accounting world. For the past almost eighteen months I've slogged through the numbers believing I had to hang up my letters and pursue that career and make it into something I would be satisfied with. What I learned was that it was safe and secure with a regular income coming in to pay the bills. What I wasn't prepared for was the war raging within me. The letters and numbers beat against each other creating a potent cauldron of insecurity that left me beaten and confused, alienated and alone, and badly in need of some direction. I let the battle rage believing it would fight itself out and there would be an eventual winner and I would be stronger for the experience.

Anger at the indecision raging within was my constant companion and this affected my relationships to the point of me staying away from family as much as possible and shutting down many of my friendships and terminating friendships before they got started. I was hurting a lot of people and myself. I withdrew from all social contact except the little (my own choice) I received in the work environment and a neighbour who showered me with unconditional love. These shaky relationships is what brought me through the battle and helped me understand my number days are over and I have a clear winner - words!

I am grateful for Kim and my colleagues at Your Wealth Corporation.

This week has started with a new-found confidence in my writing seeing me polish off my manuscript, Dusty, (working title) that I've been working on for two years. It is different to my other books and so needs to go to a different publisher. I wait impatiently for the verdict and while I wait, I place my fingers on the keyboard and work on the long awaited Mr Bojangles (working title), sequel to African Hearts. This story has been in the pressure cooker since African Hearts was finished. It is well-cooked and ready to come out of the oven, so I anticipate it will be written with nimble fingers flying across the keyboard requiring stops only for refuelling and other bodily comforts until the story is out.

This writer's life.

This writer's life.

Drakar, meanwhile ... heh, heh ... I'm pleased to say has been sent on a holiday to the lovely Antarctica where he will be for the duration of this summer and hopefully lost in an unseasonal blizzard. As for the numbers, they continue to be, but not with me. They are left in the hands of young vibrant people who want to make a difference to the bottom line of businesses and help them achieve their goals while at the same time working toward their own dreams.

As Mr Bojangles unfolds, I'll keep you posted...