One year and three months ago, I closed the door on my teaching career to pursue my dream of becoming a writer. A real one. Published. It only took about twelve months longer than I expected. But this week, it finally happened.
BF and I were unloading groceries from our cart Wednesday evening in Fresh Thyme when, as usual, I was pulled away from the task by the newsstand. I spied it–the September issue of Indianapolis Monthly–to the left of Real Simple, above National Geographic. “Charmed and Dangerous” by Debi Dixon, p. 80.
I yelled, “That’s it! It’s here!” I grabbed it from the rack, frantically flipping pages. BF abandoned the cart to share my first look.
I showed it to the checkout person . . . “Look! That’s me! I wrote this!”
“Hold it up, Let me take your picture!” Oh the joy of having your beloved share in your excitement!
The line behind us disappeared.
Thursday, the high school girl across the street was in her driveway when I collected my copy from the mailbox. I hollered, “Hey! you wanna see something cool?”
I have to wonder if seeing my picture and bio on the “Contributors” page is what it feels like to have a slamming tennis serve or hit the three-pointer at the buzzer. It’s confirmation—you’re legit.
Sitting at my computer every week (almost—except for summers) I have typed, praying that someone, somewhere would think something I created was good enough to publish and buy it from me.
And I lifted my chin back up with every rejection letter for my manuscript and editor’s email that said ever-so-nicely “No Thanks.”
Jenni, my yoga teacher and sage says that when we are living our Dharma (life purpose) we are tested. It’s like, are you really serious about this? I believe I am living my Dharma. My life purpose is to write and to share and hopefully lift the mood a bit in this world.
This week I successfully added 6,000 words to my manuscript and celebrated publication of my first article. And I crashed my new convertible and discovered that BF’s website (for which I’m responsible) crashed too and that our website designer disappeared. My hope is that turning over the worry to State Farm and attempting to find a new website manager is part of passing my tests.
My mission statement as a writer is to share personal stories that make people realize we all screw up—often. And to create characters who people wish could be their friend. To in some small way encourage, bring a smile, enrich the reading entertainment hours of those who may stumble on my words.