Sunday, June 3, 2012

What does one have to do with the other?

I just returned from the Arkansas Writers Conference sponsored by the Pioneer Branch of the National League of American Pen Women (of which I'm proud to be a new member). The keynote speaker was Charles W. Sasser, author of 50 books and thousands of magazine stories/articles. He's lived at least a dozen lifetimes in his 70 years. During his final speech, he told us that in order to be a writer, one must live life to its fullest. Can I get an 'amen' to that?

For 60 years, I lived life to its emptiest. I thought survival was sufficient. Then I wised up. The revelation hasn't come without a price, but I wouldn't go back. A public blog is not the place to share one's private epiphany. but I felt Mr. Sasser's advice was worth sharing, especially with you younger writers out there who can salvage more of life and gain more years than I can.

I don't think living life to its fullest means 'letting it all hang out', or 'if it feels good, do it'. There's the personal responsibility thing.  Years ago, an older friend whom I loved very much and for whose own empty life I ached, shared this quote with me: For all sad words of tongue or pen, the saddest are these: It might have been.

Here's a more recent quote found on Facebook:
In the end, we only regret the chances didn't take, the relationships we were afraid to have, and the decisions we waited too long to make. (attributed to

And yet another:
Chances, Choices, Changes: You must make a choice to take a chance, or your life will never change. (attributed to

Once I was young and full of dreams, and life was out there waiting for me. It's not too late for me to find it--and I'm off on the quest. Will you come along with me?

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