Full Circle

Last summer,  I was asked by YA Muse Donna Cooner to join this group. I remember how thrilled and frightened I was by the idea of contributing to such a fantastic blog. Nearly a year has passed since my first entry, and I've been thinking about the experience, how much I've loved being a part of the Muses and what I've learned - or confirmed. Here are a few things.

Writing is a solitary venture, so cherish the friendship of other writers. I firmly believe that those who write for children and young adults are a very special breed. They have a generosity of spirit, a work ethic and a sense of playfulness that is priceless. I love celebrating the achievements of this group. When one of us wins, all of us win. We're lifted up.

Be bold and be true. It's easy to get caught up in trends and themes. Honor what is unique in you and tell your own story, your way. Social media sometimes causes a "feeding frenzy" with so many opinions and advice for writers at our finger tips. Disengage now and then. You don't need to know what everyone is doing or thinking. 

Share your disappointments as well as your accomplishments. That is how you keep it real. That is how you engage others. No one wants to read a story about a character who sails through life with no obstacles. We're here to learn from each other. 

Persistence is as important as talent. And on some days, more important.

It's important to have goals. But it's equally important to decide how you want to live - to ask yourself, as a writer, what kind of life you want to have.  Do you want to spend your time doing research and uncovering a deeper truth about a subject? Do you want to move people with your words, or make them laugh, or help them to think in a different way? Do you need to write to make sense of the world? When you tell yourself that you must finish a chapter, or set down a certain number of words on paper each day, you do these these things because they are necessary in order for you to  achieve a certain goal. But what I've realized during this last year, more than ever before, is that writing and creativity give me joy and purpose. They make me feel alive. For me, joy and a sense of purpose are stronger motivators than any goal I've ever had.

So, to my fellow Muses and those who follow this blog - here's to a year of hard work, published books, shared experiences, group hugs, encouragement and being together on the road to realizing our dreams. It's been a great ride!


These are great insights, Robin! While I have trouble sharing disappointments in public forums, I do try to share things more privately, because it's a kindness to myself, allowing others to tell me it's okay or say, "I've been there." Such an important part of being in the tribe.

It has been a great ride, Robin! More than anything this past year, I've been so grateful to fresh insights and inspirations from you and the other New Muses. And I've spent the year learning (relearning?) exactly as you you say here: writing and creativity give me joy and purpose.

Thanks for the reminder.

My pleasure, Katherine! It's been so exciting to watch your books being born and to be able to hear you reflect on writing and creativity in your life. I've enjoyed it so much.

It has been a great ride, Robin! All the better for sharing it with you. I've looked forward to your posts and admired how supportive you are to others. Here's to all good things for you in the year ahead!

Thank you, Lia! And I've enjoyed being in the Muses with you.

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