Build that fort!

For whatever reason, I find the Web site Unclutterer to be surprisingly inspirational. (It also motivated me to organize my house a little better, although honestly, I think it's impossible to read that thing and not organize something.)

This is one of the more inspirational posts. Erin is writing about her toddler son, who likes to build forts and builds them all the time, everywhere she will let him.


My son’s obsession with forts has reminded me how truly simple it can be to pursue the life you desire. My son likes building forts, so he builds forts. He doesn’t talk about building forts or wish he were building forts or make excuses for why he can’t build forts, he simply builds forts. When he is tired of fort building, he will play with trains because he wants to play with trains or whatever interest is next on his agenda. Unless I tell him he can’t do something because it’s unsafe (like building a fort inside the stove), he’ll do whatever it is he wants to do.


When I was first considering moving into creative writing, I was really intimidated by it--I grew up reading and majored in English (going the hard-core honors route) and all that. And if you have basically worshipped writers your whole life, it's hard to think of little ole you actually writing, you know, real books.

The question I had for myself was, Would I produce anything any good? And one day, it occurred to me that, before she started writing, Flannery O'Connor did not know she was Flannery O'Connor, Legend of Literature. There was no hand coming out of the sky, writing with burning letters in the air, "GO, THOU, FLANNERY O'CONNOR, AND WRITE! YOU'D BE REALLY GOOD AT IT!"

No, Flannery O'Connor had to do it the hard way--she had to write, and then see if her writing was any good.

And you know, that was an important realization: Writers write. If you want to be a writer, then you have to write. You can talk about it until you're blue in the face, but you won't be a writer unless you get words onto paper. There's no intermediate step. (I mean, yes, Flannery O'Connor got into the Iowa Writers' Workshop, but she had to write first to make that happen.) No one can do it for you. You just have to make that leap and then see what you've got.