Archive for November 27, 2013

THE COURAGE OF THE YOUNG WRITER

I salute those youthful individuals who toil daily for the love of their art. Jack Kerouac banging out On The Road on his endless roll of paper not knowing where that work would lead. For hundreds, thousands of Jacks the road is a dead-end. They are the unsung heroes of their art hoping the nod of someone of power, the recognition that never comes. You shall remain unknown, taking your work to your graves.
I began my fiction writing career thirteen years ago when well into my fifties. I stumbled upon this career by accident. Beginning with writing a memoir, I soon turned to short stories and finally novels. While beginning this chapter in my life, I had already been a scientist for twenty years and well established in that profession. Thankfully my two careers overlapped and when a lay-off raised its ugly head five years ago, I became a full-time writer. Since beginning my writing career I have published more than twenty-five short stories and one novel. I’m just getting started for I have two more novels written and a host of short story ideas. Yet, with all this under my belt, some who know me think I ‘just dabble’, that writing is my hobby. None of them know the terror of the blank page or computer screen, but you do my young and young-at-heart friends.
This reflection of my past and present is to contrast the path I took to writing with those who early on decided that putting down in words their thoughts and products of their imagination was the purpose of their life. They take any job available to support their profession, a profession where they can well spend hundreds of hours not knowing if they will make a penny.
You have chosen a lonely profession. For when you take up your pen or sit before your keyboard there is only you and your thoughts. That loneness is the great equalizer between the known and unknown writer.

November 27, 2013 at 8:29 pm 2 comments


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