In Others' WordsIn Others' Words

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

In Others' Words: Imagination

"Your imagination is your preview of life's coming attractions." ~Albert Einstein, physicist

When was the last time you let your mind wander ... let it lead you down the "what if?" road, around an unexpected bend into an idea that took your breath away?
When I read Einstein's quote, I realized I'd been taking these shallow half-breaths that didn't fill my lungs.
And then I thought of my 10-year-old daughter. She's all about coming attractions. Life for her is one "what if I do this" and "what if I do that" after another. She starts writing one book. Stops. Starts another. Stops. Starts another. Stops--and you guessed it--starts another. 
The writer/editor in me wants to give her a stern lecture about finishing what she started. Set some measurable goals. Maybe ask her if she wants me to critique one of those stories-to-be.
But she's too busy imagining the next story she could write. 
I've decided to let her go. Let her run after those dreams. Let her imagination run wild. This is no time to erect a corral around her maybes and what ifs and imaginings. 
Sure, I have things to do. The never-ending To Do list resides in the clutter on my desk.
But if I ignore my imagination one day I'll wake up and the "Coming Attractions" sign will be removed from my life. Why? Because I won't have taken the time to daydream ... ponder ... ensure that something was waiting up ahead ...

In Your Words: So ... dreaming about anything? Dreaming big? Any coming attractions in your life? When is your favorite time to imagine "what if?"

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At 8:28 AM, Blogger Wendy Paine Miller said...

This is why I absolutely adore the planning stage of writing a novel (and that first draft). I let my imagination run wild and it feels like waking up to the world all over again with each new novel.

~ Wendy

At 8:35 AM, Blogger Keli Gwyn said...

Beth, you must be excited that your daughter loves writing the way you do. I think it's neat that you're encouraging her to embrace her imagination and pursue her dreams.

My dream ever since I was seven was to be a published author. I didn't muster the courage to pursue my dream until forty years later. Five years after that my dream was realized. Our awesome agent sold my debut novel, so my coming attraction is its release in July 2012.

At 9:20 AM, Blogger Jeanne T said...

I like this post, Beth. At this point, I feel the to-do summoning me, discouraging me from daydreaming. Some interesting "What If's" have actually come when I'm driving. At that point, I always pray for a red light so I can write it down. :)
My big dream right now is to write my wip. This will be big for me. :)
Thanks for the encouragement to dream and ask, "What If...."

At 9:40 AM, Blogger Lisa Jordan said...

Imagination is a daily requirement in our house. My Little Darlings teach me about the value of make-believe from their perspectives. We adults need that childlike imagination at times.

I love brainstorming and seeing how different thoughts and comments come together to create a vivid story.

I love how you're giving C free reign to let her imagination run wild. It will be corralled soon enough.

At 10:13 AM, Blogger Melissa Tagg said...

I dream...A LOT. And like your daughter, sometimes my dreaming means I have a hard time finishing one project before skidaddling (sp??) on to the next. But imagination is a must...I love the part in Anne of Green Gables when Anne chides Marilla for her lack of imagination:

Anne: Don't you ever imagine things differently from what they are?
Marilla: No.
Anne: Oh Marilla, how much you miss.

(Frankly, I think there was more of a dreamer in Marilla than she admitted...)

And, to answer your question, one of my favorite times to imagine "what if?" loooong staff meetings at work. hehehe...

At 10:59 AM, Blogger Reba J. Hoffman said...

Here's my problem. I'm sitting there, minding my own business and all of a sudden, my life is taken over by the imagination monster. In mere seconds it conjurs up all manner of wild, zany, stories. If only I had a secretary who could dictate for the ideas that cross my mind. :-)

At 12:15 PM, Blogger Beth K. Vogt said...

Reba, I love your idea of a secretary--all in favor? Say "aye!"
And I love that writer community is alive and well with coming attractions ... I'm surrounded by imaginative people. Of course, not all of them are writers, I know this too. ;o)


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