Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear
Last post I wrote about how I said no to Grad School (click here to read) and as freeing as that was I still had to come up with a plan.
Because I quickly realized: Books take a long time to write and edit and even when you're published, Amanda, you won’t make a ton of money.
Also, hate to break it to you kid, but you can’t work at Disneyland forever.
Remember my wise younger brother Andrew?
He asked me what I desired most in a career. After brainstorming I discovered that the three things I wanted to do in life were:
- Public Speaking
My brother advised, "I would just try to do those three things the best you can on the side until you get good enough that opportunities will open up to you that will pay you to do them."
Andrew hardly got paid for the YouTube videos he made in High School and the music videos he later made with his college roommate, but because he worked multiple jobs ranging from Cold Stone to detailing cars and kept on making videos--bettering his craft--people are now willing to pay $600 a day to have him produce a music video for them.
"Not only that," he told me, "but I had no intention of ever making money off of them nor did I honestly think anyone would really watch them. I was making them more for myself than anything, I was challenging myself with each video I made, making sure that I was learning and improving in some way and that I personally thought the video was awesome."
One of my favorite authors, Elizabeth Gilbert, wrote this: “You can measure your worth by your dedication to your path, not by your successes or failures.”
She also wrote this about how unfair it is to expect your art to support you: “But to yell at your creativity, saying, ‘You must earn money for me!’ is sort of like yelling at a cat; it has no idea what you’re talking about, and all you’re doing is scaring it away, because you’re making really loud noises and your face looks weird when you do that.”
After saying no to Grad School I buckled down and wrote like a mad woman on my second book, a memoir about my spiritual journey through summer camps and enduring multiple back surgeries while in high school.
And guess what?
I wrote the first draft in nine months.
I even went to a writer’s conference in Los Angeles and gleaned wisdom from people like Cheryl Strayed (author of Wild).
Here is my question to you: Are you making time for your creative endeavors or are you paralyzed by fear?
Before I leave you today, here is a great interview with Elizabeth Gilbert on her book Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear.