“Live your dreams everyday.”
“I just write what I wanted to write. I write what amuses me. It’s totally for myself. I never in my wildest dreams expected this popularity.”
J. K. Rowling
In all the ink pouring out about Steve Jobs, the word that came up again and again was “visionary.” Steve didn’t follow markets or trends, he created them. From what I’ve read, he didn’t depend on focus groups or test drive his ideas. When someone asked him what market research went into creating the iPad, he replied: “None.”
This reminded me of J.K. Rowling’s comment that she didn’t think about her audience while she was writing. She just wrote what she wanted to. Along with wonderful imaginations, J.K. and Steve share this in common: they each trusted their intuition, their inner compass. And never it seems, did it lead them astray.
Trust your intuition, your inner knowing — it sounds simple, doesn’t it? And yet it’s not always that easy to do, at least for me. Sometimes I’m so tempted to ignore that little voice or I’m so easily distracted that it’s drowned out by other voices clamoring around me.
But here’s one thing I’ve learned: the more you listen, and the more you trust your inner voice, the easier it is to hear it and the stronger it becomes. Just recently, I was asked to take on a new project: It was tempting, but I felt it would take me away from my focus on my YA novel, and so I violated the first rule of the freelancer and turned it down.
Why? Because every time I thought about doing it, that little voice inside me piped up and said “No. Let it go. It’s not what you really want. You’ve made your choice, now stick with it.” It was hard to turn down work, but I listened. This is either one of the smartest things I’ve ever done, or one of the dumbest. But hey, for me, it was really dangerous. Write on!