When the spark of inspiration for my current writing project, A Time In Paradise, flashed in my mind, I wondered if I had what it took to be a writer. Would anyone want to read my story idea? Would I know how to write it correctly not having had any formal writing education?
I recalled a comment from my college graphic design professor when she found out I wanted to do my senior art show in photography, though I was a graphic design major. “Why would you want to do your show in photography? You’re not a photographer.”
Her comment planted a seed of doubt, but I proceeded anyway because I thought - I’m an artist, it shouldn’t matter what medium I use! I’m pleased to share I was granted and had a successful senior art show in photography and graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Graphic Design.
Teachers and sometimes family and friends, because of their importance in a person’s life, need to remember that comments they make have a profound impact. Their intentions may be good or they feel they are saving him or her from future heartache from failure, but everyone is unique and what works for some, may not work for others. And what if there is failure? I don’t see the life experience of going after your dreams and it not coming true as failure. Most of the time, you learn and attain a new dream.
Through life, I’ve followed the simple rule that has carried me to where I am now – no matter what - never let anyone steal your dream.
When I was twenty three years old, I made the decision that I wanted to move to Hawaii. In those months before I received the offer for a graphic design position at the Honolulu Star Bulletin, everyone promptly gave me their thoughts on how it probably wouldn’t happen. Even my own mother asked me when I was going to give up on my dream! I told her, and everyone else, I was never going to give up on my dream. A couple of months after I’d made my decision, I received the call for the position at the newspaper. So I packed my bags, shipped my car, and moved to Hawaii. Of course I was scared, it was my first time on my own, but the desire to live in Hawaii was bigger than my fear. And though there were many challenges that greeted me after I arrived, I have never regretted moving to the islands because the people I’ve met and the joy I’ve experienced will now be reflected in the young adult novel I am currently writing.
About eight years ago, I began my journey as a writer. I viewed writing as another way to express myself creatively and I didn’t let the fact that I wasn’t a ‘writer’ get in the way of what I wanted to do. Again, there was a certain amount of fear as there always is in beginning something new and unfamiliar, but action overcomes fear and I took action. I participated in writing courses, associated myself with other writers, submitted my work for feedback from published authors and peers, and attended conferences for writers.
Like my other creative projects in the past, I see A Time InParadise as a co-creative enterprise. Though I’m the author, there have and will be many people involved; both in inspiration and in helping to move the project forward. With this novel, I not only want to tell the story of love and adventure in the tropical paradise of Hawaii, but to also share the importance and joy of reading, daring to dream and having the courage to follow that dream no matter where it may lead.
Will there be challenges? Of course there will be, but I count them as blessings because challenges require us to grow, seek answers and align ourselves with those who are doing or have accomplished what we want.
So, am I an author? An artist? A dreamer? An over-comer? Yes, and who I am is as important as who I will become, who I’ll have the opportunity to meet, and all the wonderful things I will get to experience because I’ve chosen to not let anyone steal my dream. ©2013 T. A. Garcia