July’s an open topic month here at the Café, which means I’ve had to think of something to write about, which means I’ve put it off. And off. And…well, you get the picture.
My daughter and many others used the picture above as their profile pictures on Facebook last week because friends of theirs lost Colton, a disabled son who wasn’t supposed to make it past five and lived to be 19. I sniffled a little and laughed a little because if there’s anyone the slogan fits, it’s my special education teacher daughter and everyone who’s ever passed through her classroom. If her students don’t believe they can fly when they enter her class, they do by the time they leave it. I’m proud of her. And them.
I wanted to be Nora Roberts. What? You did, too? We’re not, though, are we? Which is good, because there already is one and a great one at that. I wanted my writing career to be going strong when I was in my 40s. It wasn’t. It’s probably going better in my 60s than it ever has. And I know it could end tomorrow, in which case I will try again.
It’s what we do. It’s the difference between professionals and hobbyists. Between people who have 10 manuscripts under the bed and ones who enter the same three chapters to contests year after year after year. Between readers who read, absorb, and enjoy and those who read a romance in 1970, decided they were all alike, and have spent the last 40-some years denigrating the genre.
I’m a professional, as are all the other Café residents. I paid my really-bad-writing dues. When my career dreams didn’t all come true in my 40s, I gave them another 20 years.
Because I believe I can fly. Don’t you?