I have always loved to write. I wrote my first poem at the age of six and continued to write on and off again through the years. As a young girl I wrote short stories and sent them to children’s magazines and publishing companies. For all my efforts I received a very nice stack of rejection letters. In college I studied literature, but knowing that most writers can’t make a living through their art, I decided to get a ‘real job’ to pay the bills. For me, writing has never been about money. In fact, it’s the joy that comes from writing that convinced me not to become a journalist. I decided at a young age that writing should never be my full time job. I fear that writing to make a living would suck the passion out of the very thing that I enjoy.
But as I write this I also realize that none of us grow up with dreams of working in a cubicle. We all want to be something else. A race car driver, a writer, a photographer, a ski instructor… I know so many people who say I’d rather be doing ‘x’, I’d rather be doing ‘y’, yet every day they drive to work and sit in the cubicles next to me.
My husband has become a recent inspiration for me. With a knack for capturing the moment and a love of photography he has been hired for part-time pursuits by a number of newspapers and websites in our area. I think of all the people who dream of a larger life and I am inspired by my husband who works his full-time job, then travels hours away to pursue his passions.
4 thoughts on “Pursue Your Passions”
When I started university I was a music major, but after a disastrous first semester I started rethinking that choice. I realised that if I continued to eat and breathe music then I would come to resent it. I majored in something else but music is still my passion. I still wish at some level that I could do music all the time,and in some ways I do. But instead of singing arias, I sing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star 🙂
You do have an interesting point, extrinsic motivation (rewards, pay, etc) can sometimes reduce intrinsic motivation (the actual love for writing that you have).
On the other hand, there’s a chance of that happening, and in my view, I’m willing to take the chance. And, hell, if I do feel like I’ve lost the passion for X by doing a job related to it, then I can quit the job and go back to the cubicle.
Baby steps help. Like your husband, you could try writing part-time. Maybe on sites like elance.com or something at first.
I completely agree with the need for baby steps. I’m hoping this blog will inspire my writing.
I realized a little bit after I wrote that comment that you are already taking this step–writing this blog. It was one of those forehead-smacking blinding-flash-of-the-obvious moments.