It’s About Time to Stop Dreaming and Start Doing

Cape Cod oceanI’ve been off dreaming again. I can’t seem to help it. I start dreaming and then before I know it, months have gone by and blizzards have turned into heat waves. Now it’s already time for fall shadows and golden light.

Cape Cod oceanLike you, I’ve been dreaming of a better world. A world without violence or hate. An unpolluted world with clean water and clean air for all. I know, I’m dreaming again.

Lately, I’ve also been thinking, “Why bother?” Why bother trying to do anything  when everything is such a mess? Why bother writing or reading or dreaming? Why bother signing petitions or joining conservation groups or marching in the streets?

The answer to all of that is – because we have to. Dreamers are the majority, but we’re not heard often enough. Sometimes we need to stop dreaming. If we did everything we can, every day, to make the world around us better then it would be.

I haven’t been out in the world much lately, except to go to a day job that gets crazier with every passing day. For the past few months, I’ve been attached to my computer while trying to use every spare moment to work on my novel Ocean Echoes. The e-book should be published soon and that’s a terrifying thought, but it’s about time to stop dreaming and start doing after all.

I’ve missed everyone more than I can say and I’m looking forward to catching up with you again.

How’s everything going? Have you been dreaming lately? What do you dream of?

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40 thoughts on “It’s About Time to Stop Dreaming and Start Doing

    • Hahha – that’s true it’s probably best to do both whenever possible! Thank you for the good wishes on the novel. It’s been an all-consuming labor of love for many years now.

  1. Missed you oh so much! I can’t remember the last time you and I exchanged blog comments!!

    I haven’t been blogging that much lately–the year has been very busy and sad, but enriching too, in a weird way, and I can’t put my finger on that one yet. But yes, I’m dreaming all the time. Dreaming of peace and equality and respect and conservation. I sign petitions every day, Sheila, and every time I do, I ask myself the same kinds of questions–am I doing any bit of good? I hope so.

    This year, more than most, I’ve been very angry over the state of the world. Maybe because it is an election year and I really want people to take a good, long, hard look at everything before they make these very important decisions. Dreaming of hope.

    I’ve been doing more and more story coaching and freelancing and editing, which I’ve been enjoying a lot. I just held a writing challenge over the summer for bloggers, kind of an out of the blue decision, but it was a blast. And yes, still writing my fiction. Always writing the fiction. 🙂

    Congratulations on your book. I can’t wait to see it out on the public stage. I’m sure it’s wonderful, and brava for taking that plunge!

    • Hi Kate – I’ve missed you too! I can’t believe how much time has gone by. I kept thinking I’d jump back into this world, but then life would always get in the way. I know you know what that’s like. I’m glad you’re still signing those petitions too. It’s crazy how easy it can be to start thinking along those “why bother” lines, but it is one of those things that gives me some hope.

      It sounds like you’ve had a really busy summer – I’m amazed that you’ve been able to do so much! I hope you and your family enjoyed your time together while reminiscing about your mom. I’m imagining it as a healing time filled with laughter and tears and love.

      One of these days we’ll have to get together in real life. I don’t get over the bridge much, but let me know whenever you’re in the area. In the meantime, consider yourself hugged. Lots of love – and let’s keep dreaming and doing!

  2. Ah, good to hear from you again, Sheila. Love your thoughts. Dreaming is awesome…that’s why you have a book almost written. If you didn’t dream, writing couldn’t happen. And it sounds like you’ve been doing good things. Keep it up. I love the story about the man on the beach picking up clams and throwing them back into the water (it’s probably something different, but in my head its clams…sorry if I’m wrong). Someone says, “You’re not making any difference.” and he responds, “It makes a difference to this one” (The one he’s holding and throwing back in to save). Anyway, the world can make it seem like our efforts are futile, but we do make a difference (even if its just a small one).

    • Hi Char! That’s a great story – I hadn’t heard it but we’ve thrown things like starfish back in the ocean too. I guess the story can work for anything (except for trash)! 🙂 I’ve always believed everything we do makes a difference, but every once in a while it’s easy enough to start thinking the opposite. Then that only becomes an excuse to sit back and forget about the things we need to be doing. Congratulations on your new book! I’ll have to check it out. It looks like a great one. I hope you’ve been celebrating with lots of chocolate!

  3. “All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them”. ~ Walt Disney
    Great to see you, Sheila! I’ve missed your smiling face. The quote above has always been one of my favorites. Often when we pursue our dreams we’re afraid of failing. I’m a firm believer in doing things afraid because the outcome might surprise you. Congratulations on your book! I’ll look forward to reading it.

    • Hi Jill! I love that quote. It’s nice to see you too! That’s a great way to look at it – to get out there and do all the things you’re afraid of doing. Maybe after finally getting our novels out there we’ll have to try hang gliding or something even crazier! That’s great news about your novel. I’m excited to read it!

      • I might have to stick with writing, Sheila…I’m scared of heights! 🙂 Thanks so much for your support. Again, it’s so nice to see you again. Have a great weekend!

  4. I’ve had my share of ‘Why bother?’ days too. Sometimes things seem impossible to achieve or tackle. But like you say, if we all do a little each day, the world could be a better place.

    Glad to hear you’ve made so much progress on your book. Very exciting that it’ll be published soon. Best of luck with it!

    • Thanks Carrie! That whole “why bother” thing is pretty seductive, because if we give in to it then we don’t have to put ourselves out there – that actually still sounds good to me sometimes! 🙂 Thank you so much for all your advice and for helping to make the whole process more fun. You’ll be happy to hear there are goats in the book too!

  5. Ocean Echoes; I love the name. Dreaming is the seed of creativity. I make it a point to keep the shades open in my classroom because I think daydreaming (a little, at least) makes my students better learners. And I like to look out the window as I teach too 🙂

    • Thanks Letizia! You’re making me want to enroll in one of your classes. I loved dreaming in class too, especially whenever the windows were open. It was a bonus whenever the lawn was being mowed out there and you could smell the grass. Maybe all classrooms should be outdoors. I hope you had a great summer!

      • It’s tough to have the windows open in my classroom as skateboards are very popular on our campus and the noise they make every ten minutes as we try to have a conversation….. haha! I hope you had a great summer too 🙂

    • Thanks Dianne – it’s fun to be back in this crazy world! I guess we’ll have to keep dreaming after all. I hope you’ve been having fun and I hope all your creatures are still inspiring you to write about them!

  6. You sound sooooo much like me in this post! One thing I always think is that imagine how even more shit the world would be without the dreamers, the hopers and the writers and poets 🙂 Congrats on being so close to publishing your e-book! I’m a bit jealous 🙂

    • That’s true – and we dreamers and hopers need to make sure to be heard more often so that maybe things will get better. The ones who are trying to make things worse are usually much more determined. Thanks Millie! There were times when it felt like this book would never be published – all the chocolate and coffee definitely helped!

  7. Sheila you are a breath of fresh air on this beautiful spring day. Im excited that you are bringing your dreams into reality. And yes we must do our bit where we can imagine if everyone just thought oh well….I will let the next person do it. I just finished reading an article in Frankie Magazine about a young vet who offers his services in the city for free, to the homeless so that their pets are kept in good health. Reading it got me thinking what can I offer this world with my art, Im sure it will come to me eventually. Meanwhile like you back to finishing that darn picture book. Im getting closer, maybe not as close as you but big things planned for next year after its finished. So good to see you blogging, truly missed you xxxx
    Kath

    • I’ve missed you! Your artwork is amazing and whenever you create it, you’re already making the world a better place. I look at birds and animals differently because of you – their intricate beauty comes through in your art. I’m happy to hear you’re getting closer with the picture book – I can’t wait to see it! Love and hugs and happy spring!

  8. You’ve been missed, its good to know you have been working though and creating so we can all get lost in a god book, that is of course how we roll. You haven’t missed much with me, reading, writing, sleeping and balancing on one leg when the whimsical fancy takes me.

    • Hahah – reading, writing, sleeping, and balancing on one leg sounds like a perfect way to pass the time. That’s mostly what I’ve been doing too – except I’m not very good with balancing. I hope you’ve been finding some great books to read. Now that the fall weather has arrived around here, it’s been putting me in the mood for some more Dickens.

  9. Totally feel you on this! Before we went to Italy, I felt like giving up on the writing thing (aka giving up on my dreams). The trip definitely helped pull me out of the grind long enough to realize all is good and the world is truly a beautiful, magical place.

    Not sure if this will help you or not, but Mr. H and I had this convo about nobody caring about our art as much as we do. It’s kind of blunt, but true—and I say it like a mantra any time I feel overwhelmed or want to give up. It helps me focus on the love of writing, instead of the rest of it.

    That brutally honest mantra is refreshing to me! Nobody cares…woohoo! 😉

    • I’m so glad Italy turned it all around and made you want to dream some more! It is a magical place. That’s a great mantra because then it frees you to write whatever you want to write instead of worrying about what anyone might think. When we start worrying about that, that’s when the doubt sets in and then there’s the whole downward spiral of thinking why bother. But all that is too easy – we dreamers have to keep doing whatever we can – no matter what. Thanks for that mantra – I’ll make sure to use it during the whole book launching thing and then maybe it won’t be as terrifying! 🙂

      • I’ll be using it for my next book launch as well, believe me. I’ve gone through it a few times now, but the honeymoon phase ends rather quickly once the release buzz settles.

        Can’t wait to read your book! xo

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