The Quotable Writer, a book filled with
“Witty and wise…words from writers and others on
the craft, practice and business of writing…”
was a gift to me from my daughter.
I turn to it from time to time for inspiration and recently decided to use it as a jumping off point for future posts.
As a Book Muse…of sorts. I would begin with the first topic, and explore a new one each month. It seemed like a marvelous idea, until I actually opened the book and saw the first topic: Biography.
Ugh! This isn’t going to work. What inspiration can I possibly gleam from quotes about writing biographies? I’m a sci-fi/fantasy writer. I don’t even pretend to tell the truth. So, I closed the book and set it aside. Yet, my book muse had already taken flight, her winged thoughts fluttering around my head whispering, “biography, biography…that’s the topic!” And wouldn’t you know…it is. It really is.
Be warned, people say, on your death-bed it’s not the hours you missed working you’ll regret, but the hours you missed spending time with your loved ones.
Yet, have you ever read a biography about somebody whose greatest achievement in life was hanging out with his or her family? Biographies are not obituaries. Obituaries are filled with families. Of so and sos left behind to grieve. Everyone gets an obituary. Only people that live interesting, *significant lives have biographies written about them. Which makes me wonder… am I living my life in a way I would find significant and interesting?
Would my life inspire me?
I don’t care what anyone else thinks, but I’d like to think that if I ever had the chance to read my own biography, I’d be pleased with how I’d spent each day. That I’d accomplished certain goals. Not Einsteinian sized goals—just MY goals.
It’s definitely not the same as living every day as if it was your last. Heck, if this was my last day on Earth, hanging out with friends and family would be the only thing I’d care about. But it’s not my last day…at least I hope not.
–Excuse me while I call my mom and tell her I love her.
(Okay, I’m back.)
Maybe it’s as simple as asking: Am I living my life the way I want to live it? Or, from my author point of view: Am I writing my own story?
Anyway… it’s something to think about.
*Biographies about celebrities (i.e. people that live interesting, insignificant lives) are purely gossip and simply don’t count.