Follow your bliss. ~ Joseph Campbell
The first time I heard of Joseph Campbell was in my Senior Humanities class. We were watching parts of the conversation between him and Bill Moyers about The Power of Myth and the Hero's Journey. I can't tell you exactly what struck me about the whole conversation, but I remember being in awe that storytelling can reflect our real lives in such a profound way--even if the story is science fiction. I grew up enamored with Star Wars, so Mr. Campbell finding additional depth from Luke's story instantly attracted me.
I'm a little embarrassed to admit I haven't read much of Campbell's work. Behind me is a bookshelf loaded with books, one of which is "The Hero with a Thousand Faces," but I've never made it all the way through. But I haven't donated it to my local literacy council yet, either. It's there for a reason.
Although I haven't read his books fully, I am still inspired by his quotes, like the one above: Follow your bliss. My husband spends hours practicing his guitar, and lately his focus has been on his surf guitar band--which nobody in this town seems to have much interest in. "Why do I keep doing it?" he told me he asks himself sometimes. I answered, "Because you love it."
When I find myself in one of my ruts, I also find myself envious of his dedication. For whatever reason, following the advice I would give any other writer falls on deaf ears when I'm talking to myself: "No, YOU get your butt in the chair! I don't feel like it." I KNOW that if I spent even half the amount of time writing that he spends strumming that guitar, I would have 2 or more complete books written by now. So why don't I do it? Isn't it my bliss? Shouldn't I follow it? If I don't, won't it get lost and not know its way back?
Maybe that's what happened. I let my writing bliss wander off for a while; I allowed it to have a little adventure, maybe to build up a bit of muscle. Because when I reign that bliss in again, it needs to be ready to work!
Enjoy your journey,