Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Dream Big

The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short but in setting our aim too low and achieving our mark. ~Michelangelo

At this time of the year, everybody talks about making New Years' resolutions. Here are some you might hear or even make yourself. Lose weight. Eat healthier foods. Exercise more. Read through the Bible. Finally write that book you've always wanted to write. Go back to school. Spend more time with your family. Do a kindness every day. So many good things we can resolve. But what about dreaming? What about thinking about what we want to happen in the year ahead? Do we aim too low with our goals? 

Years ago when I was just a kid who didn't know any better, I aimed high. I played on my aunt's old Underwood typewriter and dreamed of being a writer. I had no idea how to go about making that happen. I just knew I wanted to write down stories. I wanted to see those stories in print. And I had the amazing dream that somebody might someday pay me money for my words. Me, a farm girl who had never met the first writer. Me, a girl who had chores like stacking wood on the back porch for our wood stove and feeding the chickens. Me, a girl who only had a very few books she could call her very own. (I love libraries.) What were the odds that girl would ever figure out how to write a story, much less a book? Slim to none. Yet, there's that shelf of books with my name on the fronts under that old typewriter. Having that happen once was a big dream for me. Having it happen over and over again was a very big dream. 

 Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world. ~Harriet Tubman

In October I went to a writers' retreat where we were all encouraged to dream big. What did I want to accomplish in my writing life in the year to come? What did I want to do in my personal or spiritual life in the months ahead? Was I afraid to challenge myself with big dreams? What big dreams could I dream? I think I had a hard time coming up with what the leaders of the retreat considered "big" dreams because my published books were already big dreams coming true for me. But I could dream more books. I could dream more readers. I could dream about bestseller lists or award ceremonies or maybe movies made from my books. Those could be my big dreams, and I do dream about some of those things. I do want more people to read my books because I love sharing my stories. But at the end of the day, I can't get away from the truth that I'm already living my big dream of writing stories and having them out there for readers, and that somebody is paying for my words. Simply, without a doubt, amazing! 

I'll keep challenging myself to keep dreaming. I'll challenge myself to make each new book better in some way than the last! I'll dream of tomorrow's book and aim high. And I'll try never to forget how blessed I am to be living that long ago dream.

 God's gifts put man's best dreams to shame. ~Elizabeth Barrett Browning

How about you? Are you dreaming big for 2013? I hope so. Thanks so much for reading, and don't forget - you are in my dreams!


  1. Ann I am so happy that your dream came true and that you chose to make it happen..I am not making resolutions but have decided to not pick up things that I wont use like nic-nacs that just need dusting, going to give away some things like my Mom did at the end of her life. I am in my 70's and know we dont need all the things we keep around us..thanks for your post -always enjoy reading.

    Paula O(

    1. Thanks, Paula. Always fun to hear from you. It is hard not adding to our accumulation of things. My bigger problem is getting rid of things that have little or no value except to my sentimental heart. Maybe it is best to give away some of our treasures so we can see others enjoy them.

  2. Ann... I am slowly given away some of my little collectibles.It is kind of neat to see peoples face light up when I tell them I want to see them get a little something from me that I enjoyed. Now I go to thier homes and see my stuff on display at thier house and they tell me how much they love it. I am not a writter but my collectibles that I have are like books and see others enjoy what I liked makes me feel good. I am waiting for your next Shaker book to come out. Bless smy husband heart for Christmas he knew I enjoyed your books and bought me one.He didn't think to look in my book case to see what books I had. He bought me The Gifted one I already have. But that is fine. I am going to give the book to a dear friend that I think will enjoy it and who knows you may end up with a new Fan reader. Life is to short not to enjoy it and I enjoy life through eyes of others. Thank you Ann for all the enjoyment you give me through your books.

    1. Your husband was trying to please you. And I'm always telling my reading friends that books make the best gifts. Maybe your friend will enjoy the story and become one of my reading friends. Thank you for reading and for sharing.

  3. Hi Ann, I for one am glad you dreamed big. I do enjoy reading your books and following your blog. Although I don't have dreams as large as writing a book for others to read, I am content to care for my mom, husband, and new puppy and keep those memories in my journal. Keep writing, I'll keep reading! Linda

  4. Thanks, Linda. I'm glad you read my books and check in here at my blog from time to time. I'm sometimes amazed that anybody reads anything I write. The new puppy sounds fun and the journal will keep all that fun fresh for you. I guess I'll keep writing until I run out of words. Glad you're willing to read them.


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