|02-04-2008, 12:34 PM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Feb 2008
Making my dream come true makes theirs come true too
For a long time, I've harboured the secret belief that it's incredibly selfish for me to go after my dream of being a successful published author. I'm not sure where it originally came from, but over the past couple of years, I've begun to realise that in fact, making my dream come true has led to the fulfillment of the dreams of other people.
After wanting to be a writer since birth, I'd abandoned the idea to do the "sensible" and "realistic" thing and get a job using numbers instead. In my spare time, I wrote and wrote until I had a great deal of books under my belt. I used to post chapters on the internet, and out of this I was approached by a friend who said he wanted to see me published and would do anything he could to support me. As it turned out, this has seen his career start to be transformed as well. At first, I felt guilty that he was prepared to take so much time out to work on my behalf at no apparent benefit to himself, but he has a solid belief in what I do, and wants to make a career out of doing what he now does for me.
Then, recently, I had another example of how pursuing my dream can make others' dreams come true. I have a friend who works in radio and podcast production, and over Christmas he kept telling me about writers recording their work as podcasts and then presenting them to the world. After a few days of this, I plucked up the courage to ask him for advice to do it myself. Although one major house has already said it's interested in my work, the pace of change has so far been slow (mostly because I've been in a bit of a state about it, I think), and I wanted to get on with getting it out there. I have a small fan-base who've been clamouring for the release of the first book, so I thought it might be fun to have a go at podcasting it.
My friend immediately agreed to not only help me out with tips, but produce the whole thing. It turned out that his dream is to be a professional podcast producer. He loves the medium, but he doesn't have the massive bulk of material to do them himself. I have the material, the ideas, the creative stuff that's needed, which gives him a springboard for his own career. In a recent conference call with my agent he said he'd be happy even if we couldn't go ahead and launch the podcasts themselves, because the work was great experience and kick-started his own portfolio.
I always wanted to make a difference with my work: in the same way that Ana Pascal decided to make the world a better place with cookies (in the film Stranger than Fiction), I wanted to make the world a better place with my writing. Seeing people happy reading my work, getting involved and enjoying it was what I wanted. The strange thing is, I seem to be contributing in ways I never expected. I do talk with friends and strangers alike about what I'm doing with my life. Usually, I find that when I first start, people are very skeptical. Then I'll meet them a month later and discover that they've decided to change career, or are thinking about travelling the world. It's funny, but I never expected that boring people at parties talking about being a writer would be good for others!
It has started to knock that belief that I'm being hideously selfish on the head. I'm also aware that there are other people I've never even met who are starting to build my work into their careers. You never know the positive influence you can have in other people's lives, just by living your own.
|02-04-2008, 03:32 PM||#2 (permalink)|
Join Date: Nov 2006
That's so inspiring, Joely! You would actually be stingy if you weren't giving the world the incredibly lovely gift of your self-expression, wouldn't you!
Good for you for being generous and loving, even though it's not always easy. That really takes something.
Lots of love,
|02-04-2008, 03:50 PM||#4 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jan 2008
You know I fell into writing completely by accident. I wanted to tell the world about compulsive overeating and how you could recover. In doing so I wanted to write a book and from that I ended up - quite by accident writing regularly for a medical journal. I was amazed where one thing led to the other. I've never turned down opportunities to help people out and the next minute I would find those skills useful for myself.
I'd love to hear all about the podcasts as it is something I am contemplating doing on a new website.
|02-04-2008, 04:04 PM||#5 (permalink)|
Join Date: Feb 2008
It's amazing how these things work out. Podcasting for Dummies is a great place to start. I've been lucky enough to get access to a full-on radio studio and get a great producer, but based on what you've said, I guess you'll probably find the same kind of opportunity out there. You can do it from a laptop if you have the right equipment, and then all you need is a place to host it. Anyway, have a read of the book and listen to their podcasts. I'm sure that'll tell you everything you want to know. We're launching on March 1st, barring issues. I'm very excited!
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