Starting out as a creative writer is tough. And, I learned that the hard way.
I left my corporate job a year ago, July 2013 after consistently battling to move ahead. With no solid prospects, I left to follow my heart and dream: to be a creative writer.
The initial struggle was masked by the euphoria, several trips and the summer. That was until the fall settled in and I began to realize how quickly my savings was dwindling. From that point forward, I struggled to pay bills and started selling possessions on Ebay as well as completing on-line surveys (which pay about 25 cents each) to pay the bills. It was frustrating. I cried a lot.
Thankfully, I had several strong supporters behind me, encouraging me. They asked about my writing, how I was forging ahead, and how I was doing. One of those individuals was my dear friend Maggie who, in the midst of the chaos and emotion, gave me a Giving Key. Her note, which still hangs on my vision board, shared with me that although she wasn’t as ‘rich’ as she used to be, she said she could support me in lots of other, non-monetary ways. In that list was her love and encouragement, explaining how proud of me she is for being so clear and determined and that she had faith in me.
By this time, I had picked up several paying clients that allowed me to pay the bills. However, even since then, the journey has been an emotional roller-coaster of doubt and frustration as I’ve struggled to get ‘words on paper’ and balanced both client work and my passion for writing.
Now, as I’ve passed my one-year anniversary, I’ve solidified my position in life and become more comfortable with my experience. At the same time, my younger sister Mary Kay has followed in my footsteps, so-to-speak: she left her tenured position with the government and moved to Los Angeles to pursue her dreams of being a personal trainer. Having spent very little time in the fitness industry, she moved to the second largest city from a town of less than 25,000 with nothing more than her car and a few personal belongings.
To say that it has been a challenge for her is an understatement. The industry expectations have pushed her to limits outside of her comfort zone and in ways which she’s previously never been challenged. She often times goes to the work (the gym) and has days of hopelessness and tears. We’ve talked through the challenges and brainstormed solutions. It’s only been three months and she’s still struggling to find her place.
I have sent her my key with much brotherly love, knowing that she now needs it more than me. My hope for her is that within a year she will be able to pass it on to someone else in need.
(The photo submitted is a photo of Maggie during a recent picnic dinner when we chatted about my journey)