When I received those paperbacks (copies of my two novels), and when I first held them in my hands, I instantly thought about my favorite quote, “We all die. The goal isn’t to live forever, the goal is to create something that will.” And I said to myself, these books are going to last a long time. The physical objects, the paper, the glue that’s keeping all the words together, won’t last forever. Technically speaking, nothing does.
But all this got me thinking about my legacy. I know I’m young, but fate doesn’t care about these sort of things. So I thought about what I’d like to leave behind.
Am I building something now? Am I the person I’ve wanted to be? Are my dreams coming true? You know, the type of questions one does not like to ask. But I kept asking them, I kept trying to find answers.
I’d like to believe that my stories are going to last for a long, long time. Maybe for as long as the human race itself. But what can you do about this? How can you build a legacy? How can you make sure that people will remember you?
The only question I can think of is this: you have to live your life exactly the way you want to. That’s what true courage is all about: acting without regard to consequences. Or something like that. And do only the things you love to do. There isn’t time for anything else.
We often take time for granted. We believe tomorrow is certain. But it’s not. Sadly, we can never see what the future holds.
I’ve always wanted to be a writer. And in my definition of a writer, it doesn’t matter if you publish paperbacks or e-books, or if you just blog. Being a writer isn’t about genre or style or awards. Being a writer is simply about writing. Finding an audience is important, I give you that, and I am truly grateful for being able to present my thoughts to such a large audience, but I don’t think this is the most important part.
When I sit at my desk and I write, nothing else matters. To me, this simple act brings joy to my heart. And suspended inside the few moments that I spend writing, I’m perfect. I don’t need anything else, I don’t want anything else. There’s nothing to take from those moments, nothing to add or change.
A few moments of perfection, that’s how great things are built. And then, everything that follows, it doesn’t matter. Because you keep on writing. You write when you feel like it, and you write when you don’t. You write when you’re happy, sad, confused, or tired. You write when you have to write, when you feel there are too many words crammed inside your skull, and you write when you don’t feel like it.
That’s why I want to build something great. Because I feel that there’s greatness to be found every time I sit at my desk and write. Because I’m happy when I write. And I want for a small part of that to remain long after I’m gone.
And I keep staring at my books, with my name on them, I keep weighing each and every copy, trying to figure out how long will it be before they turn to dust. But then I remind myself that I feel most alive when I write. And if I keep writing, beautiful things will happen.
Credendo vides, as the Romans would say. By believing one sees.
I believe I can build great things, and this belief will help create the fact, as Steinbeck would say.