March 16, 2005


I'm so damn The current mood of augustdreams at

It Couldn't Be Done

Somebody said that it couldn't be done
But he with a chuckle replied
That "maybe it couldn't," but he would be one
Who wouldn't say so till he tried.
So he buckled right in with the trace of a grin
On his face. If he worried he hid it.
He started to sing as he tackled the thing
That couldn't be done, and he did it!

Somebody scoffed: "Oh, you'll never do that;
At least no one ever has done it;"
But he took off his coat and he took off his hat
And the first thing we knew he'd begun it.
With a lift of his chin and a bit of a grin,
Without any doubting or quiddit,
He started to sing as he tackled the thing
That couldn't be done, and he did it.

There are thousands to tell you it cannot be done,
There are thousands to prophesy failure,
There are thousands to point out to you one by one,
The dangers that wait to assail you.
But just buckle in with a bit of a grin,
Just take off your coat and go to it;
Just start in to sing as you tackle the thing
That "cannot be done," and you'll do it.
...Edgar Guest

The manuscript for "Monsters Under our Beds: A Cultural History of Horror" (Whew! Unwieldy little title I've chosen! But I'm very attached to it.) is coming along great. Even better, thanks to a favor from a friend, I've got an agent who will look at it when I'm finished. No promise that she'll decide to represent me, but that's okay. It's enough that my work won't be immediately slush-pile bound. My other project, "House of Night" is slower-going, but I'm just as excited about it. I can't find a decent haunted house tale anymore, so I'm writing one.

What's that got to do with Edgar Guest's beautiful poem? Well, there are certainly plenty of people who think going after writing as a career is foolish. I'm sure someone told Anne Rice and Micheal Crichton that they'd be better off to follow a more practical dream. What if they'd listened? One of my favorites, H.P. Lovecraft was constantly being rejected by publishers. I can't imagine the loss if his worlds had remained undiscovered. It's okay if I never get rich, or even make a comfortable living as a writer. Don't get me wrong. I want those things badly. But they're not the reason I write. My horror/fantasy series has enough books in it now to stock a small bookshelf and I sure as hell don't make any money from that. But it gives me indescribable joy. The only thing better than being inside my written worlds is sharing them, and having people besides me care about them. That just flat does it for me. Gives me a natural high that sends my heart soaring.

So my point (and I do have one... really!) is that life's too short to be practical. Too precious not to go after your dreams. Everyone knows Galileo's name. Who can name even one of his critics and detractors? Chase your dreams, whatever they may be.

Have a great day and thanks for reading.

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