I pulled the printed box out of the printed shipping bag and was at once grateful for the thoughtfulness of the packaging. After just recently getting the different covers for Ruinwaster’s Bane printed so that I could look at them, I could imagine the discussions with the printers.
My first job after college as an employee and not a temp was at a printing company. I member the small house in-law cottage I lived in at that time. I set up a table in the A framed attic and my fancy typewriter with the fifteen character long liquid crystal display that showed the two or three words at a time as I typed. When I hit return it typed out the whole line in one fluid printing motion. It was awkward but it was fancy and new technology at the time.
I was trying to write my story, but I didn’t know what made a story. I was going to write but Resistance and the calling of my shadow career was slowly taking me over. It was the beginning the long path of avoidance that Steve Pressfield embraced with courage in writing about his time in the Wilderness in Govt Cheese.
Recently, I had seen other examples of people who at struggled and waited for thirty years to come back to their calling. Come back to their dream. Ke Huy Quan’s speech at the Golden Globes. Matt Damon’s interview about him and Ben Affleck coming back to writing their most recent medieval movie script. Jason Riley and Eric Basler’s reconstitution of the Surrealist music. Steven Pressfield. Me. If you look, you can find other stories like this. One starts out with a dream and then they surrender the middle part of their life to work, a job, money, or some other distraction to avoid the raw power of their childhood dream.
Some are lucky. Some turn and return to their intended path. Some don’t. It is the hero’s journey. The artist’s journey. It’s analogous to the fantasy adventures we read with the trappings of magicians and monsters. Dragons and trolls. It’s the time in the wilderness where the protagonist struggles and fights against forces that seem larger and more powerful than herself. Then she has her all is lost moment and in that bleak place she finds a nugget of understanding about herself and she rises up into her new life.