I’m Too Young for a Midlife Crisis!

February 15, 2015

Maybe call in an existential crisis, or maybe it’s something else. I go through this every now and again, as do a lot of people. Not just writers or artists or other creative types, but people in general, who live lives as normal as it comes.

Of course I’m talking about my lack of success in the field that I would prefer it to be in, which can come in varying degrees for many different people. For me, it’s the fact that I’m not at the point on my career path I’d love to be at. Allow me to explain.

It’s 2015. We’re living in the future, baby! I’ll be 35 in June. While I do have several very important things going for me that we as a society are “expected” to have by this age, I still don’t feel like I have what I always wanted.

Sure, I’m married to the woman who makes me happier than anyone I’ve ever known. I’ve got a job, that while it isn’t my dream job and the best thing ever, it still pays fairly well and could be a lot worse. I don’t live with my parents, or anyone other than my wife and cat. I have a car, that I own, and has no problems at all! I’ve even got a kickass collection of Riddler action figures and collectibles!

But I’m not a full-time writer. Sigh…

We all have goals in life. Some people just want a family. Some want a mansion in the hills. Some want a specific car. Some just want to be gainfully employed. Some want to be taken care of so they don’t have to do anything for themselves, those lazy bastards…

But I want to be a novelist. I mean, I am, as I’ve written three already (one of which is being professionally edited as we speak!). But I want to make a living off of my writing. I want magazines to pay me big bucks for stories I write. I want publishers to pay me big bucks for books I write, and then to see them in bookstores like Barnes & Noble and on Amazon.

And yet, I’m not there yet. I’m getting there, and with the help of my editor, it’s going a lot faster than I expected. < Cue “Happy” by Pharrell! >

But again, I’ll be 35 in four months. Why couldn’t I have done this sooner? Why did I have to be so lazy in my 20’s and even my late teens? Seriously, this is all my fault. I cannot blame a single person who isn’t name Myke Edwards. I opted to do other stuff than write, or edit, or submit, or get my ass in gear and get moving on this.

Why couldn’t I have done this stuff when I was 25? Or even 30? Why did I sit around for five years (seriously, FIVE YEARS!!!) on finishing my most recent novel? And why did I wait for six months before even thinking about editing it?

Today is a friend of mine’s birthday. She’s 26. I’m so glad to see her happy with everything, at least as happy as I can tell through her Facebook feed. But just a little bit ago, I thought of myself at 26, and how blissfully unaware of my future as I was. All I cared about was getting drunk and…well, that’s about it. Why did I have to wait so long to actually get serious about writing?

I’ve known since I was 15 that this is what I’ve wanted to do. Well, technically 11 if you really want to split hairs. But my dream since the age of 15 has been to be a novelist, and it never stopped. Oh, if only I could have had someone stand over my shoulder and beat me any time I strayed from my path.

But that’s not how life works. I need to accept that I was lazy and can only learn from my myriad past mistakes. I need to work hard and often to ensure that I can have the life I want, and always have. Because let’s face it, no one’s going to just hand it to me. I’ve always believed that hard work pays off, and I need to deliver on that, or else I’ll just fall by the wayside, and this blog won’t be updated anymore.

(By the way, earlier when I said I want to be paid big bucks, I am well aware that it won’t happen for a long time, and I really need to be successful to make a lot of money. That said, I don’t want millions of dollars, really just enough to live off of. I don’t need a mansion or a fleet of cars, just enough to provide food, clothing and shelter to my wife and myself. Anything else is probably going to charity.)

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