What is Success?

Success

School has officially ended for the semester and one thing we learned has been sticking with me, so I thought I would talk about it. So this won’t be like my usual posts, but I hope you’ll stick around to read it, anyway.

In one of my classes this past semester we read a short story called Sur by Ursula K. Le Guin. I won’t describe it too much in case any of you would like to look it up, but it’s about a group of women travelling to Antarctica and keeping it a secret. One of my classmates posted on the discussion board asking about the “achievement” in the story. A few of my classmates were debating on whether or not the expedition to Antarctica could exactly be called an achievement. This is simply because the women in the story kept it a secret. They didn’t share their achievement; therefore no one knows about the achievement. How can you do something as great as travel to Antarctica and never share the news?

I commented on the thread stating that achievement is measured by your own personal goal and your perspective on it. For example, I believe travelling to Antarctica is a huge achievement; especially since it was their first time doing so. Just because the group of females did not share their journey with their friends, family, and the press, it doesn’t mean they weren’t successful. To put it simply, they wanted to travel to Antarctica and they did. Wouldn’t you call that an achievement?

I associate the word “achievement” with “success” because they’re both about reaching a goal. According to Dictionary.com, this is one definition of success: “the attainment of wealth, position, honors, or the like.” I can only half agree with this. The reason I agree with it is because of the “position” part. I used to want to be the director of the preschool I worked for. If I had worked my way up to that position then I would have felt successful because it was something I wanted to do and I would have worked hard to get there.

The reason I disagree with that definition is because of the “wealth” part. Money does not buy happiness even though our paychecks always make us smile. However, once the bills start rolling in, our smile fades and we’re back to square one. If your goal was to make it to the top of your career with a nice pay raise, then I could call that successful if that was something you really wanted. If it was a job you truly enjoyed and you weren’t doing it just to get rich off of it; even though the money would be a plus.

Another reason I disagree with it is putting the story into perspective. Sur is a work of fiction, yes, but no where in the story did the group of women attain wealth, position, or any honors. They kept their goal a secret from the world. They deemed themselves successful because they had achieved something they wanted to do.

Another definition of success by Dictionary.com is: “the accomplishment of one’s goals.” I have to say that I like this definition a whole lot better. However, what exactly is a “goal?” Again, it depends on your own perspective and what you want. My big goal is to become a full-time writer. Yet, there are many little goals along the way.

When I write my standard 2,000 words in one day, I consider that an accomplishment for that one day. When I finish a novel, I consider that to be an achievement. I’ve never completely finished editing a novel enough to throw it at a publisher, but I’m sure when I do that will be successful in itself and I’m sure I will be very happy with it. When I get a novel published for the first time, I will be successful. Will I be a full-time writer after publishing that one novel? No, probably not. However, I will write more and the more I write the better I will become. I will come up with more ideas and become more creative. Eventually I’ll come up with a novel good enough to allow me to stay home all day and do what I love and do best: write.

It won’t matter what position I’m in if I still have a day job and it won’t matter how much money I’ll be bringing in. My goal is to share inspirational characters, interactive plots, and open up a brand new creative world for all my readers to love and enjoy.

And when that day comes, I will be successful.

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Two Awards

Beautiful Blogger

First things first: The wonderful Topaz nominated me for two awards! Thanks, Topaz! The first one is the Beautiful Blogger award. Here are the rules:

1.Copy the Beautiful Blogger Award logo
2. Thank the person who nominated you and create a link back.
3. Nominate seven other bloggers and say a little something about them.

The Howler

Here are the rules for The Howler Award:

1. Display the award on your blog. This can be in your sidebar or on a special award page
2. Thank the person who gave you the award and link to their blog
3. Give 3 examples of things you would like to see changed in the world
4. Nominate (in your own time) at least 5 bloggers that deserve the award
5. Donate the equivalent of $10 to a charity of your choice (optional)

What I would like to change in the world…all of these are easier said than done, but…

1. Fix the economy — seriously, it’s ridiculous
2. Stop war — this is even more ridiculous
3. Stop bullying — I hear way too many negative stories on this subject

My Nominees for both The Beautiful Blogger & The Howler Awards…

1. Random Acts of Writing — A regularly updated blog with many tidbits of writing. She has a few works in progress and is hoping to see them on the bookshelves soon.
2. Readful Things Blog — A wonderful writer, blogger, photographer, book reviewer, etc. She does everything that screams “art” and is fantastic at it.
3. Aspiringwriter22 — I have too many good things to say about Herminia. She is a fantastic blogger, a wonderful writer, and a hard-worker.
4. Permashift — I know I nominated this blog for an award not too long ago and it’s easy to understand why. Her book just came out less than a month ago, so please go check it out!
5. Uniquely Russell — A wonderful poet and writer. He is taking place in NaPoWriMo this year, so please go check it out if you want to read great poems!
6. Luna’s Little Library — Literally the best place for book reviews. Enough said.
7. Lysa Taylor — A wonderful writer. Check out her book trailer on her website (it’s really well done)!

There are my nominees…I could have written more about them, but I think it would be much easier for you to see for yourselves, so you should go check out their blogs. 😉

Thanks again Topaz!