The question is: When are dreams in the fairytale realm and when are they to be pursued?
I have a little dream up my sleeve and I've only begun to mention it to a few people, in a "maybe, only if and perhaps" sort of way. However, since I'm into transparency here on this blog, and since I'm learning a thing or two about dreams along the way... I'm going to share a little more. Also, with this blog post I'm entering a contest for a free year in the Freelance Writers Den!
Test #1: The Test of Time
What happens to your dream over time?
When Isaac was one year old I returned to my full-time job as a policy analyst. This transition was sort of my post-partum blues period. I took it hard, and yet, this is where my writing dream began (well, my writing dreams have been around since I was wee, but this is where this writing dream began).
I thought about changing careers and looked into options for working from home. One day I googled "Becoming a Freelance Writer" and was delighted to find writers blogging about making a living writing. I appreciated their positive words and success stories. I could relate to their "About" sections and the reasons they pursued and enjoyed their careers. I also dreamed about other career changes too. A year and a half later, the other ideas are vague recollections in my past, but making a living writing is still just as prevalent a hope as the moment I read that first writer blog.
Test #2: The Test of Eternal Perspective
What are the reasons for your dream?
I want to have more time to invest in my child (and hopefully children). I want to be around more to influence Isaac's character, support his development, and comfort him. I was embarrassed about this reason for my interest in a home-based writing business until I spoke with a local freelance writer, Paula Roy. This was the first thing she told me - she couldn't bear to be away from her son and that's why she started her writing business.
I also want to write to influence, particularly in the area of impacting the lives of marginalized or vulnerable persons.
And finally, writing helps me live fully and I would also like to help other women find this heart fulfillment if it's something they're interested in.
All these reasons, I feel, are Godly and in line with my desire to pursue dreams that have an eternal, not just fleeting, impact.
Test #3: The Test of First Steps
What happens to your dream when you take steps towards it?
I've started pursuing my writing dream. I started two blogs to wake up my writing muscles; I developed a writing website (it's a work in progress); I sent out a couple queries and corresponded with an editor on one...
As I've done these things, I've found the writing career seems more and more tangible and realistic.
My plan was to launch my writing business full-time after our second baby. The second baby hasn't come along yet but I've decided to keep moving forward anyway. I have a writing contract, on the side, over the summer and here are my goals for the year:
- Refine my website;
- Develop a LinkedIn profile and start networking;
- Make business cards;
- Set out a plan with some timelines and concrete steps;
- And (here's the biggie), try out some writing venues, like guest blogging, querying some sustainable gardening magazines, and seeking out more opportunities with the non-profit sector.
In summary, dare to dream! Step out and take risks when your dreams pass the tests of time, eternal perspective, and first steps!!!