Trust me, this sounds way more impressive now (even to me) than it felt back then. Because back then I was running. Running away from figuring it all out. Running for my life.
Back to the waterfall. As I mentioned it was the third day of the tour, and it was the last stop before we bushwalked the 800 meters back to the 4WD vehicle, packed into the tailbone numbing confines of the bench seats, and drove back to a hostel where I could take my first hot shower in over 72 hours. It was the second tour I’d been on in two weeks, and I was exhausted. This tour in particular involved an encounter with a spider so large I’m not prepared to talk about it, it involved a sunburn to go down in history, pushing a fallen tree roughly the size of a sequoia off a flooded road so we could reach our destination, holding a wild python our tour guide rescued from another flooded road, and miles and miles of hiking in the wet season of an area in Australia as close to the equator as I ever need to get. The waterfalls made it worth it. So did the company.
But as the rest of the tour group was about to climb up the final mountain for a little cliff jumping (something that would normally be right up my alley), I found myself too tired to join them. I was physically beat, yes, after all I’ve mentioned above, but it was more than that. My very soul was tired. I was in my third month of meeting new people every day, putting my best foot forward every day, explaining who I was and where I was from every day on a shallow level while trying to figure that out myself on a far more personal level. I longed for a few moments of solitude after the constant chatter and movement of the last weeks.
We were at a low waterfall that seemed to be begging for me to stay a little longer, to pay it a little attention, so I told the tour guide I was going to stay behind. They had to come down the same path they were climbing, so he agreed. I believe his exact words were “Too easy, mate.”
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve doubted my ability to become a novelist. Many times. Many many times. Almost ten years after that moment at the waterfall, I am looking for an agent for my second book and busy sketching out an idea for a third one. (My first one, which was based on my travels in Australia, was unable to find an agent to love and nurture it into publishing, but that’s a story for another post). I’m not published, but I’m at the point where I can add “yet” to the end of that sentence and actually believe it. I know I will be published. I know because I can’t NOT write. It’s the thing I do that makes me feel special, connected, plugged in. And I can’t give up on that dream, no matter how many times I get rejected. And when you know something that deeply, it’s not a question of if, it’s a question of when.
And that’s what this website is about – the pursuit of a dream that is statistically improbable. The journey to becoming a published author. If you like, follow along with me as I pursue this crazy dream!