Making Investments in Our Future

“There is always one moment in childhood when the door opens and lets the future in.”

~Graham Greene 

I watched the Oscars last night and I thought about all of the awards shows that we as writers and artists’ watch throughout the years and all of the acceptance speeches that we hear.  It is extremely rare not to hear an actress, actor, writer, director, singer, songwriter, or visual artists’ (graphic or otherwise) thank their parents for allowing them to be who they are and for not only encouraging their gifts but for also enhancing it by being supportive of that talent.  

I started thinking about the children whose gifts and talents are not acknowledged, let alone encouraged by their parents.  All of the gifts and blessings for the world that are not being realized because there is no one there to tell them that it’s okay to dream and dream big.  I was one of those children.  

When I watch those awards shows I can’t help but to think of whether I could’ve been one of those artists accepting an award for their brilliant talents if only I had a mother that encouraged or enhanced my gifts, or at the very least, acknowledged that I had any.  I know that I’ve mentioned here before that my mother was (to put it in nice terms) not very nurturing.  She never really believed in me and to this day it still hurts.  

I do feel that when she heard me singing around the house and heard other people who didn’t have to placate me tell her that I was actually good at it, that she perhaps could have invested in some voice lessons, or piano lessons for me.  Maybe when I wrote the class poem for my eighth grade graduation and my teachers all told my her that she had a very gifted writer on her hands, she could have put me in writing workshops that they had for children (and they had them, I checked).  Or maybe when I sent a poem to a songwriting contest and received a letter saying that they wanted to turn my poem into a song, however, they needed to deal with my mother contractually (because I was still a minor), she could’ve done what she needed to do as my mother to make it into a reality.  She could have actually invested in my gifts when I was younger but she didn’t.  

While I know that I can not jet off back into time and change what never was, I am left to constantly wonder what could have been.  Most days I don’t dwell on it.  But on nights like last night when I see people accepting their awards and whose parents clearly believed in them enough for them to get where they are now, I get a little resentful (as much as I hate to admit that) towards my mother.  

But that is when I just turn that resentfulness into a persistent desire to make sure that I am different with my daughter.  I want to make sure that I encourage her creative talents, enhance her gifts by supporting and investing in them, and empower her to believe that she can do and be whatever it is that she dreams she can be.  I want her to know that I believe in her and that I know her future is worth the investment.    

If we as parents do not invest in our children’s future where are they supposed to get the idea that their future is worth investing in to begin with.  It starts with us and if we see brilliance in our children it is our job and our duty to help them develop and cultivate their gifts.  They are our future and we have to make investments, not just in the stock markets and the next big business venture (not that our own careers are not important as well), but we have to invest in them too because their future is worth it.  They are our future Grammy, Golden Globe, or even Oscar winners and we have to help them get there.  Don’t wait until tomorrow to make an investment in your child’s future, do it today!       

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://writetobe.wordpress.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

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Channeling Your Past Hurt into Greatness

Most people tend to think that for any artist, whether it be writers, painters, dancers, singers, songwriters, or actors, they must suffer some great loss or tragedy in their lives to produce great work.  While I would like to say that this is not true, in fact I believe that I have actually said that I disagree with that statement, I am discovering more and more that there might be something to that.  

I mean Adele made a chart topping hit record completely based on a bad break up.  The best-selling book Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert was written to help her through a painful divorce.  Countless hip hop records are drawn from personal hardships.  There have been many successful careers formed from a tragic experience.  I sometimes wonder why it is that creative people are somehow scarred in damaging emotional ways.  

I have come to a conclusion that perhaps the way that we let go of the pain that we experience is to transform it into greatness that other people can possibly relate to.  In order to let go of some of our past hurt we have to create a new joy within our own creations and expressions of our gifts.  

If that does happen to be true, that tragic and hurtful experiences do produce great materials that people will love and somehow identify with, then I have a really bright future within my writing career.  Instead of dwelling on all of the tragedies and hardships you might have been through, you should channel that hurt and pain into something great.   

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://writetobe.wordpress.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

Graduating to the Next Level

“The artist is nothing without the gift, but the gift is nothing without work.” 

~Emile Zola 

This morning someone said to me as I was coming out of the gym, after complimenting me on my continuous efforts to get better in my physical fitness, that as long as I keep putting in the effort and hard work God was going to keep graduating me to the next level.  There was something about the thought of being promoted by God to the next level of my life, or even the next level of my journey to maintain a healthier lifestyle that made me think deeply about what that meant in other areas of my life as well.  

I will admit that when I started this conscious effort over two years ago to change the way I eat and my relationship with food, in addition to changing the way I think and feel about physical exercise, I became a little obsessed with it.  I think that it might have come at the expense of my passion with writing every single moment I could get.  I literally used to write everywhere I went, on napkins, on little bulletins or scraps of paper, I would write while I was eating, sometimes while I was lying down (supposedly trying to go to sleep).  I put that much hard work and effort into it and while I had not yet saw the fruits of my labor at that time I didn’t really care, I was just consumed with the passion that I had to write.  

When I wonder now why I have not yet gotten to where I feel I should be in my writing career yet, I now have to consider the fact that I simply stopped putting in the extreme hard work and efforts that I used to in order for me to graduate to that next level in my writing career.  Now don’t misunderstand me, I have not stopped being passionate about my writing in any way (or I wouldn’t be able to maintain this blog).  I simply seemed to have traded one obsession for another and my efforts were unbalanced.  I don’t in any way regret dedicating the time and effort that I have to beginning my journey to a better and healthier, more physically fit me.  I only regret not finding the balance I needed to graduate to the next level on both aspects.  

When you’re younger you have these stages in life that you graduate from to move on to the next level.  From elementary, middle and high school, to college and even graduate school.  Typically when you’re going through the school stage of your life you get breaks in order to have time to gather yourself and prepare for what that stage entails.  However, when you get into that stage where you have to really start living your life you don’t get those breaks.  

There is no time to wait until you have thought about what it is going to take for you to get where you need to be, there’s just hard work and effort.  Simply put if I don’t find a way to balance my efforts and my level of hard work in both areas that I am passionate about (health & fitness as well as writing) then I may not be able to simultaneously graduate to the next level on both fronts.  

It’s hard to put all of my effort and time into just one thing because I am passionate about so many and in the case of my health, that is a passion that is necessary and I can’t afford to sacrifice.  But writing is my first love, and like any kind of relationship, I have to put in the time, effort, pay close attention to it, continue to nurture it, and learn how to balance it with everything else that is important to me so that I can make it to the next level in my writing life.  Until tomorrow…Are you putting in the time and effort so that you can graduate to the next stage of your life? 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Freelance Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://writetobe.wordpress.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

10 Commandments of a Successful Writer

Today I started thinking of things that I could do to be a better, more successful writer.  Things that I am not already doing or that I am not doing enough of.  I began thinking if there were Ten Commandments for a writer what would they be.  So I compiled a list of some things that I think should be a commandment for a writer to follow, at least one that wants to be successful at it. 

  1. Write Every Day (No Matter What!)
  2. Start a blog and blog frequently, if not everyday
  3. Make your presence known on the internet.  If you don’t have one already, get a Facebook page, a Twiiter account, and a LinkedIn account.
  4. Maintain your presence on the internet by committing yourself to social networking daily
  5. Read about the Business of writing and your craft.  You can never know too much about what it is you love to do
  6. Trust your talent and your skill.  If you don’t believe in your talent, who else will
  7. Get a thick skin because there will be rejection letters, probably more than you would ever like to see, but you have to keep believing in your talent.
  8. Read consistently.  You have to be a great reader to be an even better writer.
  9. Network with other artists, not just writers
  10. Start calling yourself a writer to the rest of the world because you are one. 

Well the list probably isn’t perfect but those are definitely some things that I know that I need to work on to become a better and more successful writer.  What would you guys add to this list or better yet, what would your list read?  Until tomorrow…Always strive to be a better writer than you were yesterday! 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://writetobe.wordpress.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

Let’s Talk About Courage (Pt. 2)

“One isn’t necessarily born with courage, but one is born with potential.  Without courage, we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency.  We can’t be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest.”

~Maya Angelou 

I think that creative people are very special.  I say this not just because I am a creative person and that I surround myself with nothing but people who are also immersed in their own creativity.  I say this because being someone who’s life’s purpose centers around the creative arts is not really something that one can learn or that can even be taught if it is not ingrained somewhere deep inside of them.  Take a singer for instance.  You can give someone vocal lessons and the techniques and coaching that they may need to make their voice better and stronger, but if that natural talent and ability was never there in the first place, if it did not live deep inside of them, then it would never be able to be taught. 

There’s something else that lives inside of a person who is creative at heart, courage.  I think that being a creative person takes massive amounts of courage; the courage to withstand rejection, the courage to be patient and never give up while waiting for your turn, the courage to step out there and take the risk of being rejected to begin with, the courage to sacrifice comfort ability to serve your purpose no matter how crazy your loved ones may think you are.  

It takes courage to be your true self even if it is not what is expected of you or what is perceived as something that will be a more immediate success.  So today’s message is for all of you out there who are fulfilling your creative aspirations and enduring people looking at you or questioning your choices as if you’ve lost all of your senses.  Keep wearing that badge of courage because in the end it will pay off and you will be glad that you remained true to yourself.  Until tomorrow…“Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the resistance to give in to that fear.” (Mark Twain)  

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://writetobe.wordpress.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

The Stigma Behind Creating Greatness

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us most. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and famous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God.”

~ Marianne Williamson 

I was listening to a clip the other day of a speech that author of Eat, Pray, Love, Elizabeth Gilbert gave discussing the need to nurture creativity and to dismiss the automatic assumption that all writers, or creative types in general, are tortured souls.  I hadn’t realized until I watched this clip just how much I had always bought into that myth in the past and in some ways had fueled my creative ability behind it.  

Now it’s not that I would be any less of a writer if I didn’t have a terrible childhood where I grew up with no father and a very angry and all around abusive mother.  In my case I think that my bad childhood was indeed the fuel behind my early beginnings as a writer.  But I think that sometimes I got it into my head that if I wasn’t going through hard times and struggling to find my footing then I wasn’t a true writer.  However, I’ve realized that in the most recent years, when it comes to my writing, pain and suffering actually stifles my creativity rather than enhances it.  I feel more of a fluid movement of words when I am optimistic about things and when things seem to be going in the right direction.  

It’s always been projected that writers, artists’, and creative like minded people have this angst and anguish, this pain that lies behind their genius.  So does that mean that these creative people can not produce greatness without their individual tragedies?  You hear of great writers and poets like Ernest Hemingway, Langston Hughes, Virginia Woolfe, Edgar Allan Poe, and so many others who have had such tragic lives and their own demons to deal with and they dealt with them through their art.  However, if they were truly meant to be artists’ would it have mattered if their lives were happy and filled with never-ending promise?  

You write something today that’s a fictional story of tragedy and suffering and undoubtedly one of the first questions that someone will ask you is “Is this a true story.”  It’s as if our minds can not possibly come up with a story that is brilliant and filled with drama and tragic events that is not our own actual reality.  They do after all call it fiction for a reason.  

My daughter has a great talent brewing for writing and my best friend’s son is a movie director in the making who also has a great love for writing and they are not tortured souls.  They don’t have some tragic incident that has happened to them to suddenly make them begin to use writing as their source for directing the pain.  Why can’t there be writer’s who have come from a happy childhood and have experienced wonderful experiences throughout their whole lives?  

Why can’t writer’s, or any creative individual for that matter, not have that label of alcoholic, or drug addict, or suicidal that can be placed on them at any point in their career?  Why must writers, past, present, or future, be afraid of being doomed simply because they are doing what they feel they were put on this earth to do?  I would like to think that our future generations of artists don’t have to have that cloud of darkness hanging over their head simply because they wanted to explore their creativity.  Are we really only as great as our greatest tragedies or could it be possible that our tragedies are what strengthen the talent that is to be our greatness?  Until next time…don’t ever allow yourself to feel doomed for doing what God put you hear to do!  

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://writetobe.wordpress.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

Write 2 Be Online Magazine is looking for Writers…

Write 2 Be Magazine, produced by LadyBug Press and set to debut in January 2012, will be designed to give writers and artists a broad platform to showcase their work and share their experiences in dealing with the ins and outs of both the creative and business side of writing and the publishing industry.       

Write 2 Be Magazine is looking for writers to make submissions of poetry (including clips of spoken word performances), short stories, articles, personal essays, and book reviews.  Currently we are a non-paying market and can only compensate you with exposure and the opportunity to touch thousands of lives with just the click of a mouse.         

If you are interested in joining the community of writers that will make up Write 2 Be Magazine please feel free to e-mail any submissions and/or inquiries to write2bemagazine@yahoo.com.  We look forward to hearing from you and wish you the best in all of your writing endeavors.

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://writetobe.wordpress.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

Write 2 Be Magazine…Coming in January!!!

Okay I was going to try and come up with some profound and thought provoking blog post today but I am actually not feeling so blocked today and have been working on putting together the contents of my new project.  I am creating a new online magazine called Write 2 Be.  This magazine will be completely digital and available for free online only.  There will be print versions quarterly for subscribers who choose to receive them.  It will be designed to give writers and artists a broad platform to showcase their work and share their experiences in dealing with the ins and outs of both the creative and business side of writing and the publishing industry.  

I am currently looking for writers who would like to showcase their work, be it fiction or informative articles, artists who would like to display their artwork, spoken word artists who would like to share video clips of their performances, and author’s who would like to be interviewed and who would like their books to be featured in the magazine.  It is set to debut in January of 2012 and I am excited about what I feel it will bring and the knowledge that will be shared.  Anyone who would like more details or to share in this new venture please send an e-mail to write2bemagazine@yahoo.com.    

I am going to go ahead and get back to working on my new project before my motivation dies down and will provide further details at a later date.  I will be writing again soon.  Be blessed! 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

https://writetobe.wordpress.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm

www.lulu.com/ladybugpress

Am I All Out Of Miracles?

Faith isn’t the ability to believe long and far into the misty future.  It’s simply taking God at his word and taking the next step.

~Joni Erickson Tada

There comes a point when you decide to make the decision that you want to be an artists full time, but you don’t entirely have the means and resources to make that work, in which you realize that there are going to be an insurmountable amount of stumbles and falls along the way.  You might have even romanticized the whole starving artists’ concept and thought it might be cool to rise up from the ashes of despair and make it big proving all of the naysayers wrong.  You have probably had more than your fair share of tiny miracles along the way that you didn’t expect but were lifesavers when they presented themselves.  Well lately I’ve been feeling defeated and like I might actually be all out of my share of miracles. 

In the creative world, we rely a lot on the favor of others and more importantly on the miracles that God provides us with.  It’s not like other fields and industries where things are more certain and definitive.  For us creative types it is more of a, go where the wind blows, kind of thing.  I have went for quite some time now, not really knowing how things were going to work themselves out, just knowing that they would.  I have had many moments where I didn’t know what was on the other side but I could see the bright, or sometimes dim, light at the end of a very long tunnel.  So what do you do when you can’t see that light anymore and the length of the tunnel has become indefinite? 

There are moments when I’ve looked at those bills that come in the mail, and the activities my child can’t do, or the clothes that she needs but I sometimes can’t buy, and I’ve wondered, is God going to leave me hanging this time?  Of course I already know that the answer to that question is no but every now and then I feel like maybe I have asked for one too many miracles and one of these days God’s going to get tired of me burdening him.  I feel like I should have all of this stuff figured out by now and I should be able to go a long period of time without begging him for his favor.    

Logically I do know that through God all things are possible and I realize that God’s love and his favor is limitless and that the miracles that he provides us with are endless.  .  If people are going to make anything happen in this life the best thing that they could do is to have faith.  Faith that things are going to be okay and that God is not going to put you through anything more than what you can handle.  Faith in yourself and in the talents and gifts that God has given you and the purpose that he has given your life.  Faith that you are not going to really ever run out of miracles so long as you keep reaching out your hands to receive them.  From one starving artists’ to all the others, treasure all of your miracles and even when you are doubtful of yourself and your talent, step out on faith and let God do all the rest. 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

http://www.passionatewriterpublishing.com/thediary.htm
http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmetta-Carpenter/1069480310

https://writetobe.wordpress.com/

http://jayceedurant.wordpress.com/

http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

http://freemynd.wordpress.com/

http://spokenlikeaqueen.blogspot.com/ 

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