Something happened when I sat down earlier this weekend to put finishing touches on what was supposed to become this post. Suddenly a topic to which I’d been so committed just days earlier no longer spoke to me. It was overshadowed, I imagine, by a week of violent acts driven by the darkest human instincts. My first reaction, which I’ve come to know all too well, was one of paralysis coupled with a sense of disorientation. However, surprisingly, this time that mood soon passed. Rather than yield even an inch more ground to the negative, I found myself brimming with defiant optimism, not only for my writing but also for the creations of my tribe, meaning all of you, a band of storytellers spanning the globe. And so what I have to offer today is a fan letter, a pep talk for a troubled time.
My message is this – You are the magic for which the world hungers.
You possess all the tools, right at this moment, to accomplish what you were born to do. As author Neil Gaiman once wrote, “The one thing you have that nobody else has is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision. So write and draw and play and dance and live as only you can.” No one else will put in the time, do the research, plumb the emotions, flesh out the characters, and set the tone for the seed of a story that the forces in your life have planted. Only you can bring that seed to full bloom. Moreover, it is your duty to do so – not just for your readers, but for yourself.
“Why?” you may ask.