This has been a pivotal year for me and, I believe, for the world. For my part, I can trace my year's evolution through my journal entries. It's appropriate that it began with an entry inspired by Ben Stiller's The Secret Life of Walter Mitty movie. It's my most-liked journal entry and I've referred to it many times. I simply found it inspiring, especially with its theme of travel as being the portal through which the protagonist reconnected with reality and living his life. This came to me after the previous year of journal entries where a desire for travel and "breaking free" was a growing motivation.
I felt, however, that the cost of breaking free for me (and all wage slaves) was nothing short of death. Our world system is simply that harsh and unforgiving for workers. I expressed this feeling in a short story I called, What I Call Life (taken from a quote by Henry David Thoreau). I wrote about what that story was to me in my second journal entry that I called, Life Cost. In a nutshell, it was my own situation expressed through a protagonist who "...reaches the end of his rope on the job, receives his "bolt from the blue" offer, and makes his decision." Little did I realize that this story would play out for me in reality (if less dramatically) within the year.
Then there were some positive distractions that prompted a number of journal entries. I took a course on self-publishing at a local college that made me feel my goal of publishing novels was attainable. It inspired me so that I made a restart of my Dentville novel, making use of a novel-writing program I found (WriteWay). Using this software, I was able to get the initial draft of the book completed.
Another distraction was an education on wine brought about by my sons' entries into the sommelier field. I made a comparison of the wine passion to literature and wrote a number of journal entries about it. I came to appreciate how the subtle sophistication of a good wine can enhance a moment or occasion.
On the literary side, I expressed my breaking free desire in a "literary expedition" through reviews of several books that spoke to me on one level or other. Most notable among them was Daniel Quinn's The Story of B, which rounded out his Ishmael trilogy and that, along with Riane Eisler's The Chalice & the Blade, enhanced my knowledge of civilization's beginnings and helped explain to me, what happened to us.
That expedition into learning about humanity's history came from a darkness that grew alongside my desire to abandon the rat race. I learned more, through alternate news sources and the writings of some smart people, about the true state of the world. I saw ever more clearly the ominous coming of devastation from global warming as exacerbated by Stratospheric Aerosol Geoengineering (SAG) and the mad plans of the oligarchs for world domination. This tainted my hopes for a better life, and I struggle with it. But in my literary expedition, I realized that others struggled with it long before me, though the threat was not as imminent for them. Ernest Hemingway, for example, saw the nature of things and expressed it in For Whom the Bell Tolls. The inspiration of that book led me to breach the subject myself for the first time in a journal entry (We Fight to Live).
The last half of the year was a contest between the desired inspiration of a wider world (Another Dreamer, Moving vs Traveling) and the certain horror of our situation (The Passage we must Transit). I expect that contest won't be worked out, but rather, I'll have to explore both sides to be honest with myself, my loved ones, and my fans. Even so, I found some solace in reconnecting with an old friend that reinspired my literary ambitions (The Booksigning).
All this led up to the biggest event of the year and watershed of my life. When my wife and soulmate, Donna, found a job that would take us away from Mississippi to South Carolina, it led me to take a slightly early retirement from IT work and for us to move across the country to make a new start (Moving Forward with Courage). Donna has already made the move and I'm still in the transition--finishing my 8-to-5 job and concluding other ties.
This is the event that I said mirrored the action in my What I Call Life story. I am way past being ready to move on. The spirits and my wife provided this opportunity, and I am acting on it. I pray it will be for the better of us both. And I pray it will be for the better of you who are following me, in that I'll produce work that will help you.
Looking back over the year, it seems to me that Paulo Coelho may have been right when he said in his wonderful little book, The Alchemist:
...a mysterious force begins to convince them that it will be impossible for them to realize their Personal Legend...It's a force that appears to be negative, but actually shows you how to realize your Personal Legend. It prepares your spirit and your will, because there is one truth on this planet: whoever you are, or whatever it is that you do, when you really want something, it's because that desire originated in the soul of the universe. It's your mission on earth...And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.
So I'm pursuing my personal legend, as is Donna. The way may be rocky, very rocky, at times, but it's the only way to go.
Here's hoping your Christmas is a joy enhanced by the nearness of loved ones, faith, and the realization of the pursuit of your personal legend.