Let Go For It®: Other People’s Overnight Success

Okay, so this is a throwback blog. Sorry, but it was too good to pass up. I wrote it a few years back, when the Twilight books were all the rage. Enjoy!

Last week, I happened to be home one day catching Oprah who had Stephanie Meyers on. She’s the stay-at-home housewife turned virtual sensation after writing the Twilight four-pack that’s the biggest piece of literary chocolate since the Harry Potter Series.

Of course, being a writer myself, I’m always interested in listening to other writers tell the stories of their creative and professional journeys to the top, bottom, left, right or otherwise. How they toiled over just the right words, metaphors and plotlines for years—working at some any-job just to pay the bills—in the hopes that, someday, they’d get to produce a creative work of genius that would bring them their karmic comeuppance. And reward them for their tenacity.

I love the idea of that story. It’s so fun to project myself into it, still, even at mid-age. It’s an exercise I’ve been doing ever since I moved the tassel on my graduation cap from one side to the other in high school. And I’m not finished with it yet.

So you can imagine my anticipation in listening to Meyer talk about her uber-success. And I was riveted, until about 30 seconds in, when the rather blasé author told the short story of how she came to be this era’s new “it” girl.

According to her own report (which I believe since she neither looks nor sounds anything like James Fry), she stumbled upon the plot line and characters in a dream. (I once dreamt that I lived in my mother’s refrigerator AND I was still hungry.)

Then, with absolutely no formal training or ever having written anything beyond a grocery list, cranked out a bestselling novel so popular it will go down in history.

No, she did NOT have a finished novel in three desk drawers. She did not have a childhood fantasy of writing imaginary tales for fame and fortune in adulthood. She did not endure a dues-paying period during which she waited tables and earned minimum wage unloading seasonal inventory at the now-defunct Wanamaker’s. She did not work for $6 an hour after getting a master’s degree in “being a great writer” just for the privilege of writing dull news briefs for a trade publisher in Chicago.

She did not come home tired and spent every night from the tedium of these stop gap opportunities, and write and write and write until the tips of her fingers not only bled from tapping feverishly on the keyboard, but erased the letters on seven important keys along the way (a, l, m, v, c, r, and p—at least I think that’s a p).

No, no, Meyer just decided writing about some sophomoric vampire hop that came to her during REM sleep during a few stolen moments each day would provide a nice diversion from the tedium of caring for three small children.

That’s it. The big Oprah reveal: How Stephanie Meyer made millions, became world famous, and now in front of all the world, got to tell her happenstance story of literary glory.

On Oprah. How could you?

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Learn more about Jill Sherer Murray: www.letgoforit.com

Jill Sherer Murray is an award-winning writer and speaker who studies creativity, relationships and self-growth. She is also the founder of Let Go For It®, a lifestyle brand dedicated to helping individuals let go for a better life. Jill’s TEDx talk as well as her advice column, Big Wild Love: Let Go For It® were created in service to her loyal and growing fan base, who seek support in the act and the art of letting go for the love they desire and deserve. Follow Jill @letgoforit on TwitterFacebookInstagram and LinkedIn.

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