By Laura Mahal
Originally posted October 3, 2019
The 2019 NCW anthology—Rise!—was recently released. Within its covers, readers will find pieces of incredible depth and beauty, with themes of resilience, adaptation, and the relationships that bring us grief, joy, and wisdom.
Change is an ever-present force in our lives. Whether we rage against it or embrace it, change impacts all of us.
I spoke with several writers, who generously weighed in on how they cope with change:
1.) When one door closes, another one opens.
Patricia Stoltey, the author of Wishing Caswell Dead, offers this example:
What I’ve learned in my many years is that change is going to come whether we want it or not. My best writing-related example is the announcement Five Star made after publishing my first three books. They dropped their whole mystery line . . . I had to look for another publisher or haul out an old unpublished piece of historical fiction (Wishing Caswell Dead) to rewrite for Five Star’s remaining line—Frontier Fiction/Western. I did the latter, surprising myself with a new love for historical research. In this case, adapting made my life easier and helped me discover a different writing direction.
LESSON LEARNED: WHEN LIFE INSISTS, YOU STEP ONTO A NEW PATH, ADJUST IN SUCH A WAY AS TO THRIVE.
2.) Look to the stars.
Jason Arment, the author of Musalaheen, said this about adaption and moving in a new direction:
[I] read/studied those who have come before.
It’s good to analyze one’s methods and especially concerning efficacy. Not just how they are useful, but how they are ineffective.
Ronda Simmons, a blogger for The Writing Bug, suggested visualization.
Imagine what you want instead. For example, if the problem were my job, I would ask myself, ‘What would be my perfect job?’ and then ‘see’ it.
LESSON LEARNED: BE OPEN TO LOOKING WITHIN. SEEK INSPIRATION FROM OTHERS WHO HAVE MADE THE TYPES OF CHANGES YOU MAY ALSO BE REQUIRED TO TAKE. ATTITUDE IS KEY. TRY REFRAMING THE TRANSITION INTO A POSITIVE OUTLOOK.
3.) What advice would you offer others who are facing unasked-for changes?
First, be kind to yourself. Do the self-care things that work for you. For me, I ramp up the time I spend in prayer and meditation. Also, for me individually, in times like this, I clean my house. Having an organized, clean environment settles my nerves and helps me stay on track.
For those facing enormous challenges, it’s essential to seek help and get good advice, take care of yourself, choose a new approach to significant obstacles, and allow yourself to move on when it’s time. Change is inevitable. We must adapt.
Sheala Henke, author of Painting Half the Sky:
If we’re not moving, we’re not growing, and in that way, maybe looking at change through the life cycle of the butterfly can help us move ON, OUT, and elevate us UP . . . Epicurus said of the pupa, ‘All tucked up in there is a little fist of opportunity. It waits, deep and dark inside, and when the time is ripe and ready, it can transform the entire world with one flutter of new wings.’
LESSON LEARNED: TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF. CHANGE ISN’T EASY. BUT BE OPEN TO IT. BECAUSE IT MIGHT LEAD TO THE EXACT TRANSFORMATION, YOU REQUIRE IN YOUR LIFE.
Thanks to our Northern Colorado Authors:
Pat Stoltey: http://patriciastolteybooks.com/
Jason Arment: http://www.jasonarment.com/
Sheala Henke: https://sdhenke.com/