Natalie gave me permission to write. She is the advocate of the dervish – writing freely and madly. With Nat as my guide I learned to trust deeply what came off my pen.
But it was The Artist’s Way that pushed me – like a teenager who needs to be packed off and moved away – out into the brave world of writers who stand up and ask to be counted. (Or read.)
The Artist’s Way led me to writer’s centres which led me to writing programs like Varuna, to mentorships and short story competitions and unpublished manuscript awards. It might sound simple and obvious but it wasn’t to me. Membership to a writer’s centre seemed to me something only actual published writers would do.
By the time I finished my three months of morning pages I had begun Sarah’s Song. Shortly afterward I had my first freelance article published and from there I secured two long term columns.
The biggest thing I learned from The Artist’s Way was to indulge my passion – with magazines, union membership, books. And even when we were very very short of cash I bought what I could, instead of coffee and cake, or new clothes, and I was better off for it; inspired, hopeful, creatively charged. And on my way, slowly, to more creative fulfilment. The wads of cash, of course, are optional.
What books have inspired you?