They say "time flies when you're having fun" but what about when you're working on a dream? Writers understand this. Sure, you enjoy writing. Some days it's even FUN. But does the time fly? Do you wake up one morning, suddenly, and go, "Ha! A book! It's complete!"
Real life dreams don't work that way either. It starts with a dream. Something that won't leave you alone. An idea. A character. A city. You jot down some notes, pay a visit. You start an outline, put in an application.
Then the work begins. A story is born. You now have to write it.
You get the job. Now you have three weeks to move.
The book gets written because YOU sit down and write it. And it takes work. And tears. And sweat. And many, many words which cannot be uttered here.
The move happens because you sell half of what you own, drive 250+ miles three times in three weeks to do a job interview, look at a teeny, tiny house, then pack up your cat and race to make the 3 o'clock deadline to put down a deposit so your water can be turned on.
The next day. And you have four people staying with you to help you move.
But I digress.
One year ago TODAY my husband and I packed up a waaaay too small U-Haul and chased a dream to live by the sea, in an artist-friendly town. We downsized by 700 square feet and traumatized our cat who thought it a great idea to panic and leap up on the dashboard of the car when I was driving 70 mph down the interstate.
One year ago TODAY we said YES to the craziest idea we've yet to have.
People see the dream. They see the pictures and envy the sand between our toes. What they don't see are the oceans of tears, the fear of lost jobs and mounting bills, and the many, many words that cannot be uttered here.
Chasing a dream is HARD. Let me say that again: chasing a dream is HARD. VERY, VERY, HARD. It is hard work to build a life from the bits and pieces of wonder and magic you have collected and hoarded your entire life. Parts get left out. They get left behind. And many of them don't fit the final product. But the funny thing is that the final product starts to look much better than YOU imagined.
The final product is still many years away but I'm enjoying the building process. I could have NEVER done this without my life partner in crime. Jon Chandler, THANK YOU. And thank you to everyone who has supported this massive uprooting and who still envy our beach pictures and shots of that silly fountain that still, after a year, tends to crop up in our Instagram feed on a regular basis.
Follow your dreams, Dear Reader. But let me warn you: it's one CRAZY ride!