I just got back from a three day trip to the casinos in Atlantic City, New Jersey. I brought my laptop but got little creative writing done. I did pretty well playing at the blackjack tables and also threw a few bucks into the slot machines. It was while playing the progressive machine that my mind began to imagine ‘the what if’s’.
The jackpot was for 1.2 million dollars. What if I suddenly hit it big? What if all the right symbols lined up and bells start ringing? How would my life change?
As I spun, I fantasized about buying a big oceanfront house and a fancy sports car, and taking vacations in warm, tropical climates. I imagined myself luxuriating on a hammock beside a crystal clear pool while Bob Marley thumped from waterproof speakers. I also imagined the best perk of this illusory sudden wealth; more time to write my novels.
Even as a child, I couldn’t fathom enjoying anything in this material world if writing wasn’t involved. While other kids dreamed of lying on a beach enjoying the sunshine and rolling swish of wavelets, I dreamed of lying on the beach with a pen and pad and writing books. It has always been the central focus of my existence as a human being.
To not be able to write would be like taking away a painter’s ability to see. I’d be handicapped for life.
As I hit the spin button on the progressive slot machine a final time and my numbers still didn’t come up, I was okay with the fact that I’m not yet spending my days immersed in complete creativity. I still have to play the game of the world for a while longer. Though I haven’t hit the big time in authordom at the moment, each day I sell more books and get a little closer. I’ll keep at it until my numbers do line up.