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Proof of Life: 5 Reasons I Decided To Write a Book
It’s not about the book. Not really. The book is a part of the story but it’s not the entire story. The book is the thing, the outcome. It is what it became that is important. It was in the ‘becoming’ that I found it.
I found proof of life.
Why I Decided To Write a Book
Something from Nothing
At one time, the idea of my children’s book story did not exist. It was nothing until I made a conscious decision to make it up.
I was in college at the time, an English major and Theater minor. Working full time in the family-run day care center. A college professor gave me the assignment of writing something, anything. I used an old Royal typewriter, the kind with the big keys, no correction tape, and that pesky ‘E’ key that always stuck.
Once this purposeful act began, the influences of my current life filled in the blank pages. It was in the intentional act of making it something, the original manuscript, that I found proof of life.
Know no Limits
Life, if we let it, puts limits on us. Several years had gone by and by all accounts, life treated me well. So why did I feel trapped? Why did I feel that life was happening to me, that I was not making life happen?
Cleaning out an old filing cabinet, I found the original manuscript. The paper had yellowed and become brittle but it was a tangible memory representing the unguarded and passionate optimism of youth. It was the reminder of knowing no limits that was proof of life.
Break the Rules
They said it couldn’t be done. They said it was against the rules. Children’s books are written for one age group. Children’s book illustrations are watercolors and soft flights of fancy.
Why? Who says so? Who are ‘they’? Breaking the rules, I created a family adventure that could be read by different ages at the same time with edgy illustrations. By questioning rules that had no good reason for existing, I found proof of life.
Manifest the Purpose
Throughout the ‘becoming’ that became the book, a purpose was revealed. Like most, I suppose, we all wonder what our purpose in life is. For some it is clear, for others it is not.
For me, it was the experience of writing the book that led me to a purpose, a purpose to connect families, celebrate children and change companies. By allowing the experience of creating to unfold I found proof of life.
Honor the Influences
It’s easy enough to go through the motions of life, easier still to ignore the influences…especially if they are not all positive. I am no different. I would rather sweep the negative under the carpet and bask in the beauty of the positive.
As the manuscript began to evolve it lacked depth. What was missing? Why did it feel ‘flat’? Answer…it was too perfect. The characters were one dimensional in their perfection.
The Zealous Zebecs from the Midnight Ocean’s Zenith came alive once I decided to honor the backstories of the characters, their influences both positive and challenging. Their stories combined are my story. Imperfection is proof of life.
Proof of life is all around us. It is creating something from nothing, a book, a painting, a business, a new life. Proof of life is recognizing there are no limits; the only limits that exist are ones we choose to accept. Challenge and question what you do not understand. Manifest your purpose and above all, honor what makes you…you.