The Gift

     In the past two days I’ve been shown with crystal clarity what I want to do with my work and my life. Granted, I love to write and encourage others to likewise seek the intersection between their talents and their passion; but the greatest reward stood before me and warmed my heart long past that magic moment.

     Sunday I sat at a table, sharing my story and promoting my books as I often do. A new writer, a shy quiet middle-school student, came to my table and we talked about our shared craft. She spoke in short sentences in a hushed tone, nearly embarrassed. She asked what my books were about and I gave her my pitch, well rehearsed by time. After a brief silence, she moved on to rejoin her mother and siblings.

     Another budding author, about the same age stopped by. He seemed happy to find someone to talk to about his desire to write and enjoyment of science fiction. After he left I realized how they’d both been torn by their poverty and passion.

     I left my table and sought out each family. After gaining their parents’ permission, I gave a copy to each. Their reactions lifted my spirits and gave me hope in reaching readers everywhere. If only it were that easy to put my story into the hands of those eager to read it.

    Ten minutes later, while I stood at the coffee shop counter nearby, the young lady I’d met earlier shuffled near and thanked me. She hovered awkwardly, so I offered my hand and shook hers. She let out a nervous laugh, leaned in, and gave me a hug. That brief courageous embrace she shared encapsulated what writing means to me. Beyond telling a distracting tale of adventure, a story I would’ve read and loved, deeper than that I dream of reaching people’s hearts and moving them to action inspired by love.

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