I'm a tinkerer, a putter-about, a jack-of-all-arts. I can't help it; I don't have one strong talent in one thing, but I have a little bit of talent in almost everything. In the arts, I can sing, dance, draw, write, and act. But I can't do any of those things better than all the others. I guess it's really a lesson in choosing your battle and picking what you want your strengths to be.

Strangely enough, college classes helped. Kinda. I didn't really excel in any of the dance classes because my poor eyesight impairs my vision, and I was working with girls who had danced their whole lives. I tried to take an art class, but when I learned that I had to start at 1010 and work my way up to the classes I really wanted to take, and then found that I knew most of the skills in the 1010 anyway... Yeah, that was annoying.

I was a theatre major until I transferred to a different school. When I transferred, I was doing so to move to the same town my husband lived. One of us had to move, and he had a job that he loved. Once I transferred, I knew that my degree would have to be a starting point for a backup career if he suddenly wasn't there or couldn't work.

I realized that if I majored in theatre, I would only be equipped to do theatre for the rest of my life. If I were to make it my career, my kids (because I've always wanted them) wouldn't have a very good childhood. If you know theatre, it means lots of time in the theatre. Most afternoons and evenings. Long nights for several dress rehearsals and performances. Lots of time for someone else to raise my kids and take over my responsibility.

So I made theatre my minor--because I had so many credits in it-- and tried writing as a major instead. I really didn't want to pick just one art--if I could have majored in some horribly complicated Interdisciplinary Studies program, I would have--but I'm really glad that I picked what I did. Writing is something that is easy to teach in classes. It's also highly versatile--it involves writing commercials or writing advertisements. Then there's always writing articles and short stories and poems for magazines and submitting stuff like flash fiction and novellas to other magazines. After doing this for awhile, the natural progression is to write novels or publish collections of all those magazine submissions.

It's a lot of work. But it's work that can be done in the spare moments of a more natural motherhood: while they're napping or playing or bathing or at school; while the laundry and the dishes are running; while waiting for them at practices or while at bus stops in transit... While the work is hard and the self-push is tough, the possibilities are endless and the imagination still has room to flow.

Plenty of room. There's a poster on my wall that both Just'In and I picked out:

"The quality of imagination is to flow. It cannot be contained. It is limitless."
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