“Writing a book is an adventure. To begin with, it is a toy and an amusement. Then it becomes a mistress, then it becomes a master, then it becomes a tyrant. The last phase is that just as you are about to be reconciled to your servitude, you kill the monster, and fling him to the public.”
Sir Winston Churchill
I ran across this quote today. A dear friend sent it to me a few months ago when they heard I was starting to write my own book. Still somewhat in shock that I had actually listened to the still small voice inside that had been prompting me for years to become a published author, I had put the quote aside to see if things would play out as Churchill described.
I’m six months into the project now, and I have to agree with Winston. Writing a book is an adventure. I consider this to be my first big Helen Keller “life is a daring adventure…or nothing” risk. Not in an Indiana Jones daredevil world traveler kind of way. More like a “being pregnant for the first time” kind of adventure.
Like a baby, this book has a life of its own. It’s changing and forming itself inside me as I watch. It pulls my energy, my time and my focus. I have to feed myself with ideas and experiences and conversations that nourish its growth. I’m reorganizing my life to support my health and well-being as it develops. This ‘baby’ is transforming me. This book is literally changing my life.
So far, nothing about it has been a ‘toy’ or an ‘amusement’. It is my child … and it is my ‘mistress’.
This past week, I began writing again. I’ve been preoccupied with health issues and work for the past month, so it’s wonderful to come back to my notes and really start to dig into what I like doing best: integrating ideas and communicating a succinct message in prose. I’m falling in love with my book. Each moment I spend with the manuscript is like a private bit of bliss. I entwine myself in each story. I feel my way into each sentence, caressing the words gently. I close my eyes, focusing for a final kiss, as I sense the ripeness of each chapter and deftly retrieve a title from the air.
I know many more experiences of being coached and many more coaching conversations await me. I welcome them with gratitude and an open mind.
But what I’m looking forward to most this summer, what turns me on each morning, is the thought that every day I’ll be expressing my love—of coaching, of people, of life—through my words.
I wonder whether Churchill was right about the rest of the adventure…?
This blog post by Shae Hadden is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.