Dreaming of Greatness


“We grow great by dreams. All big men are dreamers.
They see things in the soft haze of a spring day or in the red fire of a long winter’s evening.
Some of us let these great dreams die, but others nourish and protect them;
nurse them through bad days till they bring them to the sunshine and light
which comes always to those who sincerely hope that their dreams will come true. “
– Woodrow Wilson

People like to believe talent, luck, success, skill to be given to you by… don’t know. They’re just given to you, I suppose. They’re just things you recognize in other people, but never in yourself.

People tend to believe that greatness cannot be achieved. It is granted.

I say this is wrong.

I started writing when I was twelve, maybe thirteen. Don’t remember much. I do know that I was really bad at it. When I was fourteen someone read one of my stories and told me that I was either a retard or fourteen years old. I was kind of both, but didn’t want to accept neither.

So I read. A lot. And I wrote.

When I was sixteen I wrote the first piece of real writing. A real story. It won awards and it was praised by some of the best writers in my country. I was being told that I was good, but to be honest, I already thought I was great.

Yes, I recognize that it was a delusional way of thinking about myself. Narcissistic and arrogant. But that’s what I thought. Truly.

I believed in my dream of becoming a great writer even when I was a shitty one. Maybe a bit more then than I do now, actually. And it didn’t really matter what people told me. I had faith, you see. I knew that I wasn’t as good as I wanted to be, but I also knew that one day I’ll get there.

So I wrote. And wrote… and wrote.

And, yes, there were moments when I was afraid. When I didn’t feel like writing. When I’d ask myself if I’d be better of doing something else. Moments of doubt, but they never seemed to last.

I don’t know how to give you this state of mind or whatever. How to inspire in people the way I feel about the one thing I’ve been doing, over and over again, for eleven years or so.

I feel invincible. I feel that, no matter what happens in this world, what happens to me, writing is the one thing that no one can take from me. You criticize me or my stories, and it only makes me want to write more. Actually, I do believe that this part of me is better fueled by anger than it is by praise.

My words, I think, have always meant more to me than anything else in this world.

And that is why I write. Not for fame or glory or money, but because it’s the one thing that no one and nothing in this world can take from me. And if there comes a time in my life when I’ll have nothing but my words, I’d still be at peace, because all is not lost.

What I’m really trying to say is that passion conquers everything. It conquers fear and doubt and it makes all the sleepless nights worth it.

So, whatever it is you do, be passionate about it. Learn to love what you do, learn to appreciate it… because life has the habit of taking away from you all the pieces that you never seem to appreciate enough.

And missing something never brings it back.

Greatness is a way of measuring how certain people never stop fueling their dreams. Never stop fighting for them. Never stop believing.

That is all.


  1. Great piece, and I think you’re entitled to a little arrogance with how far you’ve come. It reminded me of this quote from the good emperor: “I have often wondered how it is that every man loves himself more than all the rest of men, but yet sets less value on his own opinion of himself than on the opinion of others.”

    I share your experience a bit with writing. I made my first attempt at a novel as a teenager, and I eventually shuttered that project because I realized it was basically a carbon copy of The Lord of the Rings. A few years later and I’ve got a book series going that’s received some very good feedback from complete strangers.

    Liked by 2 people

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