An article that appeared in Woman's Day Magazine in May of 2002
And now for the rest of the story...
Early on in the new millennium I became interested in "The Artist's Way." It's sort of a self-help for creative people. It teaches one about trusting the universe, to take the plunge into the artist's pool, to take chances, and most of all to believe that what you have to offer as an artist, is important. There is a term that is bantered about a bit called "synchronicity." Sometimes, the whole concept seems a little airy-fairy (as my husband would say) until something happens that is just too good to be true.
I had been doing my "morning pages" and taking myself out on my "artist's date." I had been writing my affirmations and my goals. One of those goals was to become a full-time, professional storyteller. I tried it once in the mid-eighties, but I guess I just didn't...trust the universe. Then, in 2000, with the dawning of the new millennium came the desire to once again fulfill my artist self. My target date was August, 2002, when I could retire from the Edwardsville Public Library. I loved my job, but it became the famous golden handcuffs. I accomplished everything I needed to while I was there and gained innumerable skills. But, still it wasn't my dream.
To be a full-time storyteller means many things, but one is to stretch outside the self-imposed boundaries I had built up around my storytelling. Up until then, I told mainly in the Southern Illinois region. I often went to St. Louis that is across the Mississippi River from my hometown of Fairview Heights, Illinois. To make it, I needed to be more regionally and even nationally known. I took some action and joined Northlands, a regional storytelling organization that encompasses about eight different states. I joined Storytell, a listserve that has 500 storytellers from around the world emailing each other on the many fine points of storytelling. I decided to get some professional pictures made and have a graphic designer work on a logo for all my publicity. Things were rolling along when the universe stepped in to say, "Yes, you are on the right track. And just to prove it, I'll be giving you a surprise phone call."
That phone call came in October of 2001. A writer was submitting an article for a well-known magazine called "Woman's Day." She was doing an article on (get this) women who were living their dream job, and she thought of a storyteller. To this day, I don't know how she happened across my name with the thousands of storytellers out there. (Did the universe whisper in her ear?) Anyway, she interviewed me right then and there. I was so jazzed I couldn't sleep that night!
It's been my experience over these past 20 some years that when something wonderful is going to happen, it is best to not go blabbing about it...because the universe is fickle...and it ain't gonna happen! I know, it happened more than once. So, whenever I wanted to tell somebody what was going to happen, I just said that "the baby was in the bathtub," and I left it at that. Finally, in May of 2002, I received my complimentary copy of "Woman's Day." Eureka! I could let the baby out of the bathtub...a tad wrinkled but a sweeter smellin' baby there never was.
I had achieved my proverbial 15 minutes of fame. So many of my Storytell cyber friends ran out to get a copy and I heard from many people across the United States.
My storytelling has been a roller-coaster ride since I got on board. But, I know I'm on the right ride, because the universe told me so!