The scenario goes something like this:
You know this person – it could be a friend, cousin, coworker, neighbor, whoever. Anyway, this person is an awesome painter/baker/artist/designer/writer, etc. Yet said person never takes advantage of or uses said talent.
You and everyone else who comes into contact with this person is baffled. Here’s this great talent going to complete waste. “WTF”, you say to yourself, “if I could draw like that/cook like that/style a room like that/write like that, I’d use it for sure. Maybe even start a business with that talent.”
What’s Your Talent?
Well, how much do you want to bet that you have a talent that you’re not recognizing in yourself? It’s probably something that other people find difficult, but comes really easy to you. You may even get annoyed with other people. You don’t understand why they have such a problem when it’s so easy.
What talent are you stifling and not using to its full potential? Don’t say none, because that just isn’t true. All of us are talented in some way. Find yours and set it free! I’ve finally done just that and it feels great.
Why’d It Take So Long?
It took me awhile to get here and I’ve got some great excuses, too.
The primary reason is that I wasn’t sure that I could earn a living writing. Taking months and years writing something that may never get published seemed like an awfully big risk. That was a legitimate excuse. The odds of getting published in the traditional way were very slim. When the rent’s due, so to speak, I’d rather put my eggs (time) in another basket that had a better margin (job, business).
I know. That’s not a very confident way of looking at things, but that was my rationale. Keeping a roof over my head was my priority – as it is for most of us. Spending time writing wasn’t the best way to do that.
Now that ebooks, of which I’ve been singing praises, have increased the odds in the author’s favor, reason #1 isn’t a valid excuse anymore. I can, with work and toil and marketing, actually earn a living writing.
Fear was reason #2. What if I really suck? What if my talent isn’t a talent at all and my friends are just being polite by indulging my delusions? I wasn’t ready to put my writing self-esteem on the line … until now. I don’t know why I’m suddenly ready to face this fear, but I am. Eff you, FEAR!
Are You a Late Bloomer?
Maybe it’s age. Just put me with late-bloomers Julia Child, Martha Stewart, Grandma Moses, Colonel Saunders and Laura Ingalls Wilder – who was in her 60s when Little House on the Prairie was published. It takes some of us a little longer to get comfortable enough in our own skin to not give a flip what anyone else thinks of our work.
I’m doing it now.
Writing. It’s easy. It’s hard. But feels good — if that makes any sense.