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I suspect most writers experience self-doubt. We look in the mirror and ask:  Why am I spending so much time in front of the computer? Do my efforts have value? What am I taking away from my family and friends in this pursuit of the writing dream? These doubts may be especially common for writers who haven’t sold manuscripts or don’t have an agent. 

I’ve spent the last week on the Florida Panhandle in Destin. I haven’t written (until this morning, the last day of our week here) but I have thought about writing a great deal.  Last night, after having seafood at Dewey Destin, a restaurant that is little more than a shack on a wharf jetting out into the Gulf of Mexico, we walked to the edge of the pier. The sun was about to set. As we stood watching it sink into the bright orange horizon, two dolphins appeared. Facing each other, they leaped out of the water and flipped over—again and again. Their performance was timed as perfectly as anything I’d ever seen at Sea World. There was no reward of fish at the end of their display, no cheers from the bleachers.  Nothing to indicate anyone was watching. Those dolphins were merely doing what came naturally to them—doing what they loved for no reason except the pure joy of it. 

I think we writers can take a lesson from those human-like creatures. If you love to write, if you need to write, don’t worry about the rewards. The exterior ones may or may not come. The internal rewards are there and we reap them with every story, essay, journal entry, or poem we write. Each new word is an act of discovery. And perhaps one of the most important things in life is a clear understanding of who you are.  

So this is the lesson of the dolphins. First and foremost, do it for the joy. Write because it is in your nature to do so.      
 


Comments

Chris
10/21/2015 9:59am

Wow great lesson for all of us! Love your perspective, thanks for sharing!

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09/29/2016 5:18am

I think what really matters is the fact that you are able to help and inspire others with your writings. Personally, I salute those people who can write something that has sense. I used to dream of being a good writer when I was in my senior high. But I guess that sill isn't really for me. However, I am doing some things that might enhance it because whether I like it or not, it is indeed necessary when you are looking for a job. It is important that you are able to explain yourself in written form. Well I am really hoping that I will be able to improve my writing skill.

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Alison
10/21/2015 11:01am

Great wisdom for all aspects of life. Thank you.

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10/21/2015 12:48pm

Well said. I couldn't agree more.

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Martha Miller
10/21/2015 4:29pm

Oh baby . . . this came at such a good time for me! Thank you, Susan Goldner, for words of wisdom that really hit home!

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Bob Olds
10/21/2015 6:26pm

Very well expressed and helpful during current feelings of writer's block.

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10/23/2015 12:45pm

You have a way of always seeing the beauty in life. Thanks for reminding us.

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David Clayton
10/24/2015 8:36pm

Poet, novelist, photographer, blogger, quilter, stain glass artist, gardener, interior decorator, mom, nana, aunt, sister, Mrs. Clayton-Goldner, slut, nominated laureate, corporate director on her CV, apostle of love, PHEW, that's my mom, all around a great lady.

Thanks for keeping the fire lit, mom. Reminded me of my soccer rules: Do your best, and have fun.

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10/25/2015 8:31am

I must thank my one-man fan club son for his tribute. And explain "slut". My writing group, 5 women, started working together over twenty years ago. We met at a home in Sun City. And, after a few glasses of wine, we christened ourselves The Sun City Sluts. It stuck. Writers you know, they can't resist a little alliteration.

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Barry
01/07/2016 12:24pm

As readers of Susan’s homespun personalized, yet vulnerably-laced and uplifting writing will discover, the term slut is actually an endearing acronym for Superb Literary Undeniable Talent.

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02/12/2016 9:28pm

Can I just say what a relief to find an individual who truly knows what they are talking about on the web. You actually understand how to bring an issue to light and make it important. More people really need to look at this and understand this side of the story. I was surprised you aren't more popular because you most certainly possess the gift.

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02/23/2016 7:21am

Excellent post!

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Charles Dallmann
03/09/2016 11:28am

I appreciate the insight on the dolfins not needing a reward to do what they do naturally, and it should be as well for all artists and writers, for sure. Glad you explained about your son's reference to your alliterative group.

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05/25/2016 3:39pm

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06/08/2016 2:15am

I know that feeling. I experience it quite often.

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06/08/2016 3:29pm

In todays times when everyone is out looking for something in life that's bespoke and meets only their needs, this is a welcome relief for many

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06/10/2016 8:53am

This post is really informative and you have posted such precious and informative article which gave me lot of information. I hope that you will keep it up and we will have more informative and helping news from you. Thanks

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06/23/2016 8:39am

Doubts can kill your aim!

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08/15/2016 2:17pm

Dolphin fish are the most likely to become friends with the human and they are very friendly. I hope that the people can make their life really happy with the help of these fishes. I wish that I can go and meet with these fishes.

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09/22/2016 2:04pm

Gratefulness for truly being truly keen furthermore to decide on certain heavenly aides a great many people are truly needing to know about.

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