The Difficulty of Having a Dream

Chances are, if you are reading this blog, you have a dream.  It might be to teach someone to write, to write a story yourself, to achieve publication, to become famous…whatever.  And if you think about it, many of the conversations we have as kids and then again with our kids revolve around the power of the dream.  This is why kids want to be astronauts and president and a mermaid and a princess, why they want to train dragons, have an owl show up on their 11th birthday and walk in coat closets just in case.

What we don’t tell our kids is that while imagination will take them places beyond dreams, it is hard work, blood, sweat, tears, frustration, defeats and bruises that is the real work of dreams.  I sometimes wonder why we don’t share this with them – it would probably hinder the imagination, and that would be a true loss.

This is also probably the reason why there are so many adults who can’t dream anymore.  As you go throughout this week, really look in the eyes of the people you pass (but not too long or you might be considered a creeper…unless you are into that sort of thing – I’m not judging.  Out loud anyway).  The dreamers still have something in their eyes, those who dwell in reality only just exist.  I can see it in the teens I teach – many of them have lost their imaginations and dreams already.

There really is only one problem with being a dreamer.

If you don’t believe in the dream strong enough, hard enough, if your gut doesn’t ache a little at the thought of not achieving that dream, you won’t make it.  Just chasing the writing dream, there are questions if the story is good enough, if I’m a good enough writer to tell the story.  Then queries, critiques, pitches, presentations, editors, reviews.  This dream HAS to be strong – like clad in iron, steel and titanium, armed with determination and incredibly thick skin.

But, I can still imagine.  And when I’m there, it is very clear that every ounce of effort is worth it.