Don’t Be a Spectator in Your Life

Marshall McLuhan was a Canadian Author (The Medium is the Message), Philosopher, and his studies formed the cornerstone of media theory. He died in 1980. One of his concerns was the electronic marvel of television. He thought it would become less than marvelous for human development. I wonder what he would think of our Smartphones and their capabilities? One of the effects of television he predicted was the spawning of voyeurs. People who would rather watch than participate. Oh my goodness. Tik Tok is making him roll over in his grave.

We were meant for connection. Not artificial, like through electronics, but through face to face, sitting together over a meal, or attending an event in person. Don’t get me wrong. During the Pandemic, I have used electronics heavily through my studies during the past year for writing, establishing my LLC, and connecting with my artist who will illustrate my children’s book. Those connections have been both electronic and in person, and they have each served the purpose. I’m lucky to have made friends through media and joined groups with similar interest.

In doing those things, I am participating in my life. I’m following my plan, which has changed substantially since working with my book coach, Sam Tyler. I had nearly 80K words of a very complicated story, with lots of human growth, lots of dysfunctional characters, and several antagonists. Sam helped me realize one character and her growth could stand alone as a novel. It can, quite well. I went from being a pantster (writing by the seat of my pants, whatever spoke to me at the moment,) to being a planner, (lists, decisions, groups of scenes to play out). It changed everything. Thanks again, Sam. Get in touch with her. You’ll be glad you did.

Sure, I could have quit and sunk into the couch, giving up. I could continue reading other people’s books. I could shirk making decisions and taking risks to do something I’ve dreamed of doing forever. Living vicariously through others won’t do it for me. While I still read, a lot, now I do it through the eyes of a writer. It’s totally different. “Wow, I like how he described this.” or “She did a great job setting this scene up.” Good stuff. Real stuff is in the trenches, writing and learning. Real action is not passive. I can’t fully experience it through other authors. Years from now, will I look back and see I played the game, or that I played it safe.

It takes courage to be involved in your own drama (I don’t mean hyped up stuff, I mean the details of your life. Living your story.”). I thank God I wake up every day and get to decide how to spend my day. I’m learning to put the least favorite thing first (housework, laundry). I split up tasks and do them different days. The days we vacuum and dust, the Babe helps, which I need due to the condition my spine is in. I’m so grateful his Mama raised him to own cleaning up and cooking. He’s the best!

Keep Dreaming. And Start Doing! You can do it! It’s exhilarating! Take baby steps if you must. You get more comfortable with it. You’ll be surprised. Get over not wanting to look foolish. You can and you will before you’re done. It doesn’t matter. Really. At least you tried. And you learned what to do and what not to do next time. Failure leads to success. Just don’t give up. Live your life as a participant, not a spectator.

Thanks for reading today. You know how I appreciate it. Today, there will be more Kid-Lit videos to watch, and some domestic tasks. Once we get more organized, life will be easier. I’m so glad I started this un-cluttering and organizing things I have a long way to go, but life will flow better. Proud I attacked the job of Income Taxes earlier. I suppose I should check on our refunds and stimulus money. My share is going into the Jewell Publishing, LLC checking account. How exciting! Stay safe out there. Be Adventurous! Be Brave! Take a calculated risk! We can all do better in living our stories. Begin Today.

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