A Writer’s Gratitude

Soon most of us will celebrate Thanksgiving surrounded by friends and family and far too much food. Although many people relate this holiday to spending time with loved ones, watching football, and indulging in food and drink, it shouldn’t be forgotten that this is a time to pause, reflect and be grateful.

It is often too easy to forget that among our problems, complaints, and daily annoyances also reside our gifts, our fortune, and our blessings. It is often people’s nature to get caught up in what is going wrong instead of focusing on what is right.

Thanksgiving provides us with a moment to stop complaining and worrying and instead concentrates our attention on what is good and enjoyable in our lives. Our tradition of expressing our gratitude for our blessings is an important custom and one that is often necessary in provoking our realization of what is truly significant.

In effort to uphold the convention of giving thanks at this time, I thought it fitting to express a writer’s gratitude.

As writers, we are always quite aware of the fact that the career path we chose is fraught with bumps, ruts, sharp turns and no set map. Anyone who decides to pursue an artistic profession knows several important points including that most will never attain wealth, fame, or even a settled mind and satisfied heart.

We accept that we will struggle both with external forces that think we have made a misstep in our decision to follow our passion and with internal forces that fight to believe this isn’t true. We agree to sacrifice other more lucrative professions. We willingly consent to the constant struggle to make an unpredictable and difficult path a clear and yielding one.

Whether expressed verbally or simply in our hearts, we also accept that this all is a part of being a writer and we also agree that it is—mostly—worth it.

It is easy during the day to day to forget that our choice was our privilege to make. We complain about our necessary side hustles. We lament our perceived failures stacked neatly in rejection slips. We grumble about our insecurities. We complain about the challenges. We question our choice. Maybe this is okay—once in a while.

We must, however, take a moment to appreciate what is right and good.

As writers, we are fortunate not only in spite of our challenges but also because of them. A writer’s course is not set but because it isn’t, we are empowered to forge our path, hewing it in the direction that we want.

We may feel, at times, rejected but we also feel the drive to continue. Our perseverance allows us to pursue our passion in spite of any rebuff.

We all may not attain wealth but we are rich in our ability to believe that passion is worth the sacrifice we must make to follow it. Most of us also won’t know fame but we do know the feeling of satisfaction of reaching even a few readers. After all, writers have the gift to persuade, change, challenge, provoke, stimulate, and transform peoples’ perspectives, thoughts, and feelings with a well-told story.

Writers are blessed with a strong determination, an unwavering sense of direction in our pursuit of our dream, and the courage to continue regardless of the difficulties.

As writers we are lucky to be able to vicariously live as many lives as we choose simply by doing what we love—writing stories. So it is important that in our one given life to make the most of it by always pursuing our passion, chasing our dream, and all times—not just one day—expressing our gratitude for it all.

So remember, especially this Thanksgiving, that being a writer is a gift and we should never forget to say thank you.

Write on, friends.

Thank you for reading. I look forward to your comments.

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About Sherry Parnell