“Each of us have moments when we are swept away by an inner sense of excitement about something we are doing or want to do.  In this state, whatever we are working on seems to come alive with significance and even necessity, and our contribution seems to validate who we are or, perhaps more accurately, who we can be.”

Martha Graham, dancer and choreographer

But such moments of inspiration cannot be forced into being.  They cannot even be awaited.  Instead, for the artist to truly be an artist, the creative work must continue despite this inspiration being absent.

But why bother?

There are so many other demands upon our time and energy.  Why put up a fight against the incoming tide?  I mean, let’s face facts here.  There is so little chance we’ll succeed.

And another thing.  What about everything we have to give up in order to make this creative dream reality?

I’m so glad you asked.

The life well lived is a search for identity, priorities, peace, wholeness.  I’m not saying you’ll ever find them.  But having the courage to even speak the words, especially to yourself, is a victory in and of itself.

Then one day, we fortunate few discover something we can give our total allegiance to.  We identify a creative purpose that creates harmony from all the impossible elements and all the past pains.

Even speaking this new intent to ourselves is terrifying.  What if we’re wrong?  What if we get halfway down this road, and discover that we don’t have what it takes?  What about the sacrifices?

The risks are huge.  Of course we’re confused.  And scared.  We’d have to be nuts not to feel terrified.

The only answer I’ve found is to be honest about the alternative.  Which is to coast through life.

Taking the easy road does not mean giving up on the creative dream.  At least, not immediately.  Instead, we tell ourselves that we’re simply waiting for that perfect solution.  The calling has to arrive risk-free, tied in a lovely blue ribbon.  Until that happens, we have a safe little excuse for not taking the leap and committing fully.

The problem is, you never grow beyond the delusion that life should deliver your dream on comfortable terms.

Don’t make that mistake.

You can’t attach a dollar value to this truth.  If you go with the easier alternative, if you give into whatever stress life pummels you with, sooner or later you will drown in shadows or cynicism or both.


  • Take careful aim at your creative dream.
  • Commit.
  • Grab hold with both hands.
  • Get ready for the fight of your life.



Davis Bunn’s next novel MIRAMAR BAY comes out March 28th 2017. Don’t forget to order your copy today!


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