“Curiosity about life in all of its aspects … is still the secret of great creative people” — Leo Burnett
I couldn’t agree more. But I admit to a particular fondness for writing about family life, travel, food, health, the environment, interior design, and historic architecture.
It’s a word that’s tossed around a lot: “find your passion”, “follow your passion”, “what’s your passion?” Meaning do something you love, right? I hear people say: “My passion is cooking”, “I’m passionate about helping others”, etc. “Me, too!” I thought. “I have a passion.”
I put fingers to keyboard to write “My passion is writing.” Then pause, brow furrowed. “What the heck does that even mean? Am I ‘passionate’ about writing?” Time to stare out the window for awhile and reflect. (continued below)
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IT ALL FEEDS THIS: I WRITE
Listen. Talk. Laugh. Research. Mom stuff. Friend stuff. Cook. Eat out. Run. Travel. New people. New friends. Go out. Stay in. Read. Organize. Reflect. Connect.
Then research (for a former librarian, that’s the go-to solution for any problem).
The word passion comes from the Latin pati “to suffer”. It evolved in Anglo-French Middle English into passio, meaning “to be acted upon”.
That I get. Passion is a force, acting upon you, beyond your control. Like madness. Like love.
Yes. Writing makes me feel that way.
But the act of writing itself? It’s hard. Often it just leaves me feeling challenged, frustrated, overwhelmed, even bored. It’s not always my favorite thing to do.
So what about writing is my “passion”? What grips me, motivates me, keeps me attached to my laptop as I lose all sense of time?
It’s the telling of the story. My own or someone else’s — even the story of a business, a building, a place, a recipe. They each have a story and I want to get it out there. But why?
I get excited about the connections that are created as I prepare to tell a story. The conversations, the research, the thinking, the seeing, the tasting. By connecting those experiences together, I discover how I am going to share that story with others. I want my audience to feel those connections too. I imagine the not-yet-real audience reading my words and connecting with the story. Hopefully being entertained, educated, informed, amused — but maybe even annoyed or some other reaction I can’t even begin to predict. That’s okay too. Feeling those connections brings home the fact that we are, each of us, a of part of something so much bigger than we know. My story connects me with you. And you with me.
It’s nice to meet you.
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