“For me success is living life on your own terms and doing the things that you love …and even the times when the money wasn’t coming in, when it finally started coming in, I was affirmed in the work I was doing; and I feel like, as creatives, as people who don’t always live in the box, that’s the most difficult thing, is knowing to keep going especially when you hit these walls.”
The person who said this is Awesomely Luvvie, the awesome blogger who has become an inspiration to so many women reaching toward their own possibilities, striving to use their talents, and raise their voices. She said this during a TEDx Talk in Roadtown in the British Virgin Islands.
She spoke those words to my soul today, so today I say thanks, Luvvie. I needed this. I woke up feeling I wish, I wish, I wish, and I couldn’t articulate it. I’ve been battling waves of depression lately (if we’re having real talk), so that I went through the day, apart from the period I was leading my Saturday Jhohadli Writing Project Creative Writing Workshop series workshop, feeling like I was under a cloud, felt pretty much consistent with my days these days. The unclouded moments (not related to music, because music will never not lift me up, Black Panther – duh, and real moments with the real Gs in my life) have unsurprisingly been when I was writing or engaged in writing type activity (like the workshop series, which, sidebar, had a new participant today when a young man wandered in, asked about the workshops, stayed to audit, ended up participating, and asked to be put on the mailing list for future workshop announcements).
Anyway, Luvvie’s talk was an empowering reminder, also motivation to speak your intention (which goes against my instincts, I’m a doer not a talker, and I move in silence). I’m still not about to spill everything but I’ll pull some things from my list of writerly wishes and put them out in to the universe so that the universe can work with me to achieve them.
I wish at least one of my books was an international bestseller. Or two, or three, or six…
I wish my books were read across the Caribbean and around the world (more than they are right now)
I wish to win one of those major awards…just one, I’m not greedy
I wish for like a year or two funded (!) to write and do things writing related…maybe then I could finish one of these manuscripts-in-very-slow-progress
I wish to be able to use my skills to work on more projects that pay me and energize me (so that) I am empowered to give back (because you can’t give what you don’t have)
I wish to cement the Wadadli Pen project and expand its possibilities
I wish one of the powers-that-be-moving-things-in-my-environment could see the potential of what I can and am prepared to do right here in Antigua and Barbuda in service to the literary arts and especially at the intersection of youth and creativity, but also in terms of spotlighting the arts, and support just one of the projects I’ve pitched over the years – short of that, I wish to source the money to do some of it independent of… the latter would be better actually all things considered
I wish to have more and more and more opportunities and invitations to travel to literary events around the world – Australia and all of Africa, I’m looking at you…and also to just travel more (period!)
I love writing and I love being independent. So I wish to get my writing mojo back, to be able to align my write and make a living balance better, and to remain independent
So obviously I wish I had the money to do all of these things…and because it needs to be said, because so much of what we (artists) get asked to do is for free (and because though we have done so much for free, when we can’t we are judged), I wish more people made an effort to understand that man and woman and even writers/artists must live
Oh and I too wish to meet Oprah (and Edwidge Dandicat!)…because, of course
I’m not speaking these wishes because I expect them to just happen. I’m going to keep working and work differently where I need to. But, modelling Luvvie, to speak intention in to action into reality, and to keep working to be prepared to meet my opportunities.