Now, this was a very old friend of mine. One who I hadn't seen in a while so I didn't feel like I could correct her. But she was quite wrong. Becoming a published author never has and never will be a dream of mine. It is an ambition. And that is extremely different.
Maybe I was being unfair. She knew me when I was a child and when I was 7 or 8 years old I probably did think of writing as a dream. I dreamt of being a published author because I knew it was a long way off and wouldn't happen for a very long time (until I was grown up and sensible and could do whatever I wanted).
Because that's what a dream is. It has a degree of unattainability about it. The word dream is just too...well...dreamy. It evokes a mystical quality where the idea shimmers ahead of you; always in the forefront of your mind certainly but you are never quite able to grab it.
There's nothing dreamy or shimmery or magical about an ambition. An ambition requires determination, every little brain cell you possess and a hell of a lot of hard work. And if you lack any of those things, there is no way you are going to achieve your goal. There is no point in dreaming of the day it is going to happen - that's just a waste of time. Instead you need to put every free second you have, towards achieving the goal. And you don't stop until you get there.
So while I might be dreaming of one day marrying Prince Harry or winning the lottery and going on a round-the-world cruise, I know in my heart of hearts that this will never happen. Writing though is one thing I am never going to put into my dreams. Because I know for certain that one day I will see my name staring up at me from the bookshelves of Waterstones. And the sooner that happens the better.
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