October 15, 2014

Free-Fall into Inspiration

By Ann McCauley

We won’t discuss how I look in a swimsuit. This is not an ad for Sports Illustrated, but imagine with me, if you will... I step onto a springboard, align my heart, mind, and body, bounce high in the air to free-fall, and plunge, hands outstretched, into a vast Olympic pool called today’s world of writing.

That’s the dream. Now, here’s the reality.

What exactly do I do all day? I pick brains, otherwise known as author interviews. I chat about my status with friends and colleagues on Facebook. I work hard at promoting other writers. I tweet, which is to feed a twitter, I suppose. I hoot scheduled announcements of wisdom, and… oh, did I say write? I did not say make money. I give away money (gift baskets, embossed pens, one sheets, and business cards), but I do not make money. Not yet.

Why? Why do I do this? Because, this is what I do. If I could escape it, I would. Who in their right mind wouldn’t?

You see, I have this springboard called vision. It’s flexible, yet sound—anchored. It’s a vision God’s planted on my insides. Quality control checks it! With one flutter of my eyelashes I can see myself poised, springing into a beautiful dive, and splashing into a pool of words that inspire and guide others, whether I’m published many times over or not.

The alignment of all that I have is continually tested. Will my posture maintain its right attitude, despite rejection, disillusionment, heartbreak? Okay, I sound like a drama queen, but I can wallpaper a room with rejection letters—yes, I can. I am continually (don’t be harsh about my “ly” word) washed, wrung, heat dried, and pressed, but I cannot stay down. I cannot quit. I must often strike a new pose, shoulder’s elevated, a determined gaze on the horizon.

Then comes the free-fall. My faith. It places me in thin air above deep waters. I am a weenie not a hot dog! Once I’ve jumped there’s no way back to the board. My faith shouts believe, while my vision says jump higher, and the attitudes shout rah-rah, rise to the task. All the while, I am in free-fall?

The free dive is the hardest. It’s a combination of all dives. While twisting and somersaulting, your body must be straight. Arrow straight. Like faith, it’s made of that firm, hopeful stuff unseen by the human eye.

This is not another don’t give up talk. There is one thing you can do, if you find yourself in my position. Make the most of every assignment on your list today. Whatever path writing takes you down, whether it’s social media, marketing, rewrites, blogging… do it with all your heart. Make the most of your moments. If your words are heard by one, you are accomplished. If your craft grows, you aren’t where you were yesterday. If writing brings you a friend, you could be blessed a lifetime. Renew your vision. Pump up those right attitudes. 

Have faith, writer.

Ann McCauley married her sweetheart thirty-eight years ago. The McCauley’s have seven children, four internationally adopted. Ann’s first stories were published by Baker/ Revell in the book, Loved by Choice—True Stories That Celebrate Adoption. She led a local chapter of The Compassionate Friends, a national organization for grieving parents, and a grief counseling support group, Wellsprings. Ann, a songwriter for many years, has led praise and worship, shared her original music with churches, and performed in fundraising for Holt International Adoption Agency. Mrs. McCauley has shared her adoption and homeschooling experiences with churches, rotary clubs, women’s seminars, and homeschool support groups. She’s been a speaker and singer throughout Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee. Ann’s motivational speaker service, The Power Behind the Story, can be found on her website. She is now taking bookings for engagements. Having written three historical novels, Ann hopes one will be picked up by a publisher soon. Her agent is Diana L. Flegal of Hartline Literary Agency. Website and Blogs:  

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