Thursday, 11 March 2010

The Heart of a Man

For most of us in life we have a dream of what we want to aspire to in life. Some want to be rock stars, movie actor, big business people, or a whole range of other things. We dream at some stage in our lives that we can walk the boards and be one of the rich and famous. Unfortunately for most it stays a dream, but it doesn’t always have to be that way.

I have a dream for most of my life about being great famous science fiction writer. I love the idea of writing stories about wars in the stars and enterprising young crew trekking to bold new worlds. The adventures, romance, and conquest of evil on a galactic scale has been my dream since early childhood. The works of Lucas, Williamson, Asimov, K. Dick, and the art of Foss, Vallejo and Bell have stirred my imagination for years.

Alas it was not to be. As a sci-fi writer, I am not the best. Plus, I will admit that I do not have the patience to sit for hours writing a book. Oh, I can write one, but it would take me ten years to finish. So I realised that have my name on the cover of a best selling sci-fi book  was dream that I just can’t pursue, well not yet anyway.

However, that does not mean I need to give up on my dream. I knew that if I couldn’t write sci-fi, there had to be something else that I could do to get my name in print. There had to be something I could write that would be quick and hopefully easier, that I could do. Along came poetry.

I started writing poetry in 1995. I admit it was rough at the start but I soon found my stride. In fact in ’96-97 I wrote profusely. I must have written over 100 poems in that time. A lot were rubbish, but most were good.

I enjoyed writing so much that I even took up calligraphy so that I could hand write my poems into a book. I don’t have much time for calligraphy at the moment and the fonts on the computer make it so easy, but there is still an enjoyment on writing beautiful writing. Every now and again when I get the chance I will pull out my pen and write the beautiful words beautifully.

I may not have made it as science fiction writer but I have made it as a poet. I have had poems published in magazines and this week will see the online launch of my book, Heart of a Man. It has been a long time coming and been through several variations over the years. However, at last I am ready to release it on to an unsuspecting world.

So what have I learnt from this whole experience? Be prepared to change your dreams. If you know that what you want will be hard to reach, then change what you’re after and go for the next closest thing. Life is about compromise, maybe you can’t always have what, or who you want, but you can get closer to it if you alter your dreams a little. Plus once you’re closer to your original dream, it will then be easier to obtain it, or them.

The most important thing to remember is to never give up.

I know that once established as a poet, I can then seek help in getting some sci-fi work done. Maybe the great writers will come asking for my help to write a book. Maybe (I can dream). So if you’re shooting for the stars, go for the moon instead, and then use it leap frog it to the whole galaxy.

Terry Shadwell.

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