It’s Christmas and Douglas Coupland and I are still working on our art. Are you?
Douglas Coupland is an award-winning writer and visual artist. He is the author of more than 20 best-selling books, and he is also responsible for naming Generation X. Doug (can I call you Doug, Doug?) works on his art seven days a week, 365. In an interview with the New York Times, he said: “I've never taken a holiday . . . [t]o lie on a beach someplace seems almost sinful. What's the point of being around unless you're working on something?"
Stopping my daily writing routine for Christmas sounds dreadful because writing is how I manage to motivate myself to roll out of bed every morning. When writing stops being fun, I’ll stop. And that goes for more than just writing. As soon as anything stops being enjoyable, I cut it out of my life because l don’t want to spend my time doing something that is not going to bring joy to my life (and to others).
This is exactly what my first book Age of Agility is about: finding your passion and working towards your life and career goals. Writing happens to be my passion, not only business writing but also writing fiction. This blog will serve as a lens into my writing, whether it is AoA related, fiction, poetry, or something else I pick up along the way. If you are a fan of AoA, I hope you can see how I use the tools I wrote about in my daily life.
Today, the writing is going well. I have a wood fire warming my small Minneapolis home, a few blocks away from Lake Nokomis. The two kittens (Scout and Charlotte) are chasing each other around the Christmas tree while two-year-old Harriet watches from the safety of my neck (yes, I am writing this with a cat on my shoulder). Working towards my goals every day does not mean that I am a workaholic; I am able to write AND enjoy the holidays. In a few hours I will video chat with my family who live in the Seattle area and after that, my wife and I will drive to her parent's house south of Minneapolis and celebrate Christmas with them in the afternoon. I remember reading a blog post by Seth Godin about how he was sitting in a hotel lobby, and a couple pass him and say something like, “how dreadful, he’s working.” Working on something you love and have a passion for should not be pitied, it should be celebrated. It’s unfortunate that so many people would rather cope with a job they seldom have a passion for instead of going out and finding their true calling. If you can take a moment to meditate on one thing today, it’s that. Find something that brings you incredible joy because when you’re working on what you love, it isn’t work, it’s play.
Books currently next to me on my desk
As I continue to write these blog posts I’m going to share with you the books I am currently reading or flipping through. The reason being, a lot of people ask me what I’m reading and this is a way to update you on what is near at hand. Some books I might be using for reference some I might be reading cover to cover.
Mexico City Blues by Jack Kerouac (first word...best word)
Book 4 by Aleister Crowley
The One Year Manual by Dr. Israel Regardie
Sarah A Sexual Biography by Paul R. Abramson
Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda
Selected & New Poems by Jim Harrison
Thunder in Marrow by Rue Lazzaro