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Thursday, July 19, 2012

Why Are We Here?

The other day, a friend was having a moment on Twitter. She questioned what was her life's purpose. Among the reasons I sent back to her was one that I have personal experience with--to help someone else find their path.

I always had stories and people in my head. If I was bored, I'd just sit in a corner and daydream. It never occurred to me, though, to write the stories. They were for me. But I believe that people came into my life that helped guide me to writing--or guide me back when I'd wandered away from it. And I did wander quite a few times.

The person who got me to start writing was a friend in 8th grade. We were 14 and she was writing a story using everyone in our class as characters. She had "me" do something I didn't like, she wouldn't change it, and so I was compelled to write myself. I didn't write real people--that felt wrong--so I grabbed some of the people in my head. If she hadn't come into my life, if she hadn't refused to change something I didn't like, would I have ever started to write?

Maybe because I believe someone else would have come in at some point to push me that same direction. Excuse me, I mean nudge. Surely the universe would never push. ::tongue firmly in cheek::

While I took a short story writing class in college, the demands of my course load curtailed my writing greatly. Okay, it stopped it completely. And somehow after graduation a course catalog from the nearby vo-tech was given to me. I'd never seen one before, and even if I had, I would have figured all the classes were auto mechanics or pastry chef things, nothing I had an interest in. And yet I looked at the class listing anyway and found a novel writing course.

Another nudge.

This happened time after time, again and again through the years. Before I began working on Ravyn's Flight, I hadn't done any writing in 2.5 years. Oh, I'd tried and tried, but nothing was there and I'd given up and moved on. And then I met someone online who was a writer and the next thing you know, I'm writing again.


None of these people are in my life anymore, but they didn't need to be. I believe they came to help me find my path and/or rediscover it when I lost it. They'll never know that I owe my writing to them.

So when I think about my friend wondering why she's here, it makes me wonder how many lives she's touched without being aware of it. How many people did she unknowingly nudge in the direction they were supposed to go? None of us can know the answer to that question, but maybe we don't need to. Maybe we just need to trust that our lives do have some higher purpose.