Léna is also a Regional Manager for Writopia Lab whose mission is to foster joy, literacy, and critical thinking in kids and teens from all backgrounds through creative writing.

"Well, the question is, what do you want to believe? Do you want to live in a world where things are possible, or in one where they aren't?" Cin, Edges.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Willingness to . . .

I'm thinking of the importance of willingness today. The willingness to change and take risks, the willingness to stay open, the willingness to be conscious and awake, the willingness as writers to follow the story. And the willingness to be an active participant in my own story.

At Writopia, the kids in my workshops teach me about willingness through their creative process. They are willing to jump in and aren't paralyzed by fear of perfection. They are willing and able, allowing themselves, with my support, to enter the realm of creative chaos, and then my job is to help them train it with grammar and narrative integrity. (Notice that I write "train" instead of "tame" - we don't want tame writing! See blog post How To Train . . .) It's amazing what a little grammar can do!

So this translates to life, yes? Willingness to change: A friend of mine said today that change is easier in some ways for him when he has no choice. We turn it over and do our best to move on with our lives. But instigating change ourselves to better our own lives, being the architect, taking responsibility for our choices, now that's a toughie! I found myself nodding in agreement with him: you are not alone, brother.

I don't know about you, but, but my characters take on a life of their own. I get to shape them, but they tell me who they are. Like children, like myself, becoming conscious of my choices and my dreams.

So this is a long way of telling you all, that for the past year, my family and I have been gearing up for a huge change: leaving NYC for Northern Westchester County. Suburbs! This is the first time that I've even said that word! I've just been thinking of it as: out of the city, where there's more space, the schools are good, and real estate is (a little) cheaper.

My dream is to write, and to make a living as a writer, but living in NYC has been a stressful living beyond my means. Sure, I have pieced together a living, and I am GETTING PUBLISHED! Freaking fantastic! Somewhere inside of me, I had the willingness to write and to persevere. But in order to continue, I need to lower our cost of living by leaving the city. I mean, what are the odds of Miramax buying the rights to EDGES? So I have to be willing to do what it takes to keep writing.

What are we willing to do to live (forgive me for chaneling Oprah!) our best lives?


  1. I love this! The willingness to do what it takes is so much easier to talk about having than to actually put into practice sometimes -- what a lovely reminder.

  2. Yes Julie! And this is why we write, isn't it?

  3. This is such a good post!

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