How to Tell if You’ve Found Your Calling

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First off, chances are that if you clicked on this article, the thing you’re considering your “calling” is not it.

When you’ve found that missing piece of your life’s puzzle, your passion, your priority, you won’t have to justify it as such, it will just be.

It will consume you, swallow you whole, and leave you willingly ragged and wide-eyed and desperate for more. It will be the thing you dream about, crave night and day… And another funny thing?

It might just be one of many callings you will have.

Creative types in particular get a bad rep for being flighty and non-committal when it comes to projects and passions. Someone could be head-over-heels dedicated to painting in watercolors, and one day wake up more passionate about photography than anything else before. The transition is usually not quite that abrupt or drastic, but the point is your calling might not be the one and only calling you get for the rest of your life. It might be one of two, or three, or fifteen.

But when you pour all of your energy into your craft and forget the world around you exists, including social media posts about finding yourself, then you have it.

So, when you lock in on something that makes you feel like you’d be empty without it, hold tight and let it rule your life as much as possible for as long as possible, because the fulfillment it will give is worth all of those sleepless nights.


Did this article help inspire you? Let me know in the comments! And be sure to check out our other Tips & Tricks articles:

Please feel free to share any additional tips or your personal experiences with writing/blogging in the comments, and stay tuned for more prompts every Thursday!

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Allowing Yourself to Write the Mundane

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SPOILER ALERT: Not everything ever written is a holy grail.

Many works are steaming piles of inked garbage, and that is ok.

Even when you’re writing about how someone walks around a lake a lot or a conversation you had with someone about your eyebrows, it can still be considered writing … even if only remotely.

And whatever you write can lead to more interesting things to write about. At the very least it could be a challenge to make even the most mundane of subjects into something entertaining.

You know what? I actually kind of like that idea.
Consider this an early preview to this week’s prompt:

Try to think of something considerably boring about your life or surroundings, then challenge yourself to write about it in a way that is humorous or interesting.

Some of the best memoirs have elements of everyday life that would otherwise be considered unremarkable, and the author turned them into tiny adventures, if only to laugh at themselves after the fact.

The incredible thing that comes out of this process, however, is that you’re allowing yourself to play with style. If you remove the urge to make every word the right word, and instead focus on the overall idea, perhaps it will start to solidify that idea, which can be spruced up later.

Or not, your choice.

Writing something boring, something mundane, something that absolutely will never see the light of day is still better than not writing anything at all. Every time you put your pen to paper or fingers to keys, you’re learning more about your personal writing process, whereas not writing at all is training yourself to procrastinate, to hope for that sudden jolt of energy or inspiration that may never come.

Writing is work, and as with any job, writing must be approached with dedication and determination if anything is going to be produced. No, not everything will be the best thing ever…

But it could be.


Did this article help inspire you? Let me know in the comments! And be sure to check out our other Tips & Tricks articles:

Please feel free to share any additional tips or your personal experiences with writing/blogging in the comments, and stay tuned for more prompts every Thursday!

Finding Time versus Making Time

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve wanted to write something, but felt I didn’t have the time.

I can’t count that high.

Something always takes precedence, planned or otherwise, and so my plethora of ideas continue to roll around in my head. The lucky few get written in a notebook or on a sticky note, but many disappear into the cerebral nether.

As many already know, I am currently expecting my second child in May, which puts a huge chunk of pressure on my shoulders. Nothing I do feels like it’s enough to prepare, I constantly feel swamped with work and home life, and my writing has absolutely taken a backseat in the chaos. It’s disheartening to know stories I love and want to finish are just sitting there, all but abandoned, but I just can’t find the time for them.

A few months back, I sat down with the publisher of a local newspaper to discuss what I should do if I wanted to become a columnist, and he, too, explained he felt as though he had too many ideas and too little time to make them a reality.

And the people who do end up writing them all have one thing in common: they made the time instead of waiting for it to magically appear.

Thing is, there are no neon signs that direct you to “Write Now” or fairies in your ear that yell at you until you put pen to paper.

The trick, as you’ll hear over and over, is to just do it. 

But what does that mean, really?

A place to start might be to make 15 minute work breaks dedicated to a few paragraphs or an outline. Give yourself one evening a week when you are left alone with your writing. Take an hour before bed or as soon as you wake up to crank out a chapter or short story. Make it one of the most fulfilling part time jobs you’ll ever have.

If you really want to complete a particular work, or set of works, don’t stop making the time to see them through.

Most of the writing I get done is in my leisure time (when I’m on break at work or at home and the only one awake in the house). I take advantage of comfortable, sunny days and go sit outside with a notebook or my laptop during lunch. On the weekends when my kid is napping, I spew some words onto a page that may or may not ever turn into anything more.

And I learned something, too.

When I started to swap out my usual TV series catch-up time to instead draft my own stories, I realized just how much time I spend watching Netflix or playing video games. All that time I was undoubtedly appreciating someone else’s work, I could have been nurturing my own.

All this is not to say you should sacrifice the things that help you relax after a long day, so by all means keep up with those still alive in The Walking Dead or enjoy a quick binge session of Vampire Diaries, but know the writers of those shows (and the books they originated from) put in the time to make their ideas into something more than just a passing thought.

Treat yours the same way they treated theirs: don’t let them sit too long on the back burner and risk losing them for good.

 

Did this article help inspire you? Let me know in the comments! And be sure to check out our other Tips & Tricks articles:

Please feel free to share any additional tips or your personal experiences with writing/blogging in the comments, and stay tuned for more prompts every Thursday!

EXCITING NEWS FROM THE JUNEBUG

In just four short days, my debut novel (and first NaNoWriMo winner)
will be released into the wild!

It’s a short, young adult, science fiction novel that deals with artificial intelligence versus humanity, right versus wrong, and standing up for yourself against the odds.

And to be completely honest, I am beyond nervous.

Publishing this book has been my primary goal for so long now, I fear once it’s out there in the world, for better or worse, I’ll be left empty. It’s my book baby, my heart and soul, the culmination of everything I grew up hoping I could accomplish. It has been my book for four years, and it’s about to be out there for you.

That’s terrifyingly cool.

I am proud to have brought a story this far, and whether it becomes a best-seller or falls completely flat, it’s done.

It’s finally happening.

Without further ado, may I please introduce to you the forthcoming novel, SCINTILLA.

AVAILABLE 3.3.2018

IN PRINT (left) and ON KINDLE (right)

PRE-ORDER THE KINDLE VERSION (& bookmark for print release!)

Now to finish my next novel!