Why I Owe It All To Liz Gilbert

Why I Owe It All To Liz Gilbert

I was flying home from a business trip when I finally had the chance to listen to Liz Gilbert’s Magic Lessons Podcasts. I had been feeling unsettled and incomplete for a while but at the same time I was confused because I believed that I had absolutely no reason for feeling that way. I was newly married to a wonderful man, I had an engaging and challenging job, I came home every night to an apartment I loved, my friends and family were great. Why did I feel like part of me was still empty and unfulfilled? As I listened to Liz’s wise words about creativity and fear I finally realised what my problem was. As a person who considers myself to be creatively minded - I didn't have a single creative outlet to express myself. 

I have always loved to write and I feel words, sentences and characters bouncing and stalking around my head begging to be released as I walk to work, while sitting on the train and even when I am pretending to listen in work meetings (shhhh!) but they have had nowhere to go. I have never given my stories a chance to be realised - to be truly honoured, and they soon sink into the back of my mind like the faint memory of an old lover.

My husband and family have always encouraged me to write, telling me that I am a good writer but I shrug them off believing that without a degree I am no Writer (with a capital W). Writers have university degrees you see*, therefore I couldn’t really be a Writer. I have completed a few creative writing subjects at university which I adored but my enthusiasm always waned as the course moved into structured business communication areas (damn those communications plans!). Eventually I dropped out (twice) which filled me with a sense of shame and disappointment in myself. This didn't help my belief that if I had a degree then I could write, therefore making me a a bona fide Writer.

But that evening as the plane soared through the clouds high above the east coast of Australia, Liz's words began to burn hotly within me (this wasn't the first time - I once ran off to Italy for 2 months because of Eat, Pray, Love but that is another post altogether),:- 

All procrastination is fear...

Sometimes we honour art so much, we think the stakes are higher than they are...

If you don't feel like you are ready then you are because every amazing, beautiful, magnificent creative thing was produced by someone who wasn't ready before they began...

These words, these simple words of truth managed to ignite something so fierce and full of passion inside me that I finally knew what I needed to do. I needed to wrangle and stamp down the fear of not being a Writer once and for all and just bloody w-r-i-t-e.

So I did. It started off small. A short 1000 word essay for a writing competition which then led to this blog; this little corner of the internet that I call my own. I finally faced the fear of not being good enough and of not having the university degree that I thought would allow me to finally think of myself a Writer. And do you know what? I have never felt more happy and fulfilled since I wrote my first post just a few months ago. I don't do it for anyone but myself (but I thank anyone who drops by with bucket loads of gratitude), and I don't care what anyone thinks. I am just so happy I found my voice, my outlet, my passion, my Big Magic.

Most of all, I am so very thankful and forever grateful to Liz Gilbert for helping the Big Magic finally, finally come to realisation in my life. 

Except for Maya Angelou, Charles Dickens, Jane Austen, George Bernard Shaw, Emily Bronte, H.G. Wells, Jack Kerouac, Jack London, Mark Twain, William Faulkner...

 

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Dear NYC

Dear NYC