My youthful dreams included subatomic particle research in nuclear physics and an ambitious plan to solve Einstein’s enduring problems with his beloved Unified Field Theory. Despite such high aspirations, I ended up a lowly insurance salesman--a Willy. It doesn’t matter how it happened, it just did. Intellectual failure reminded me of that Broadway play. I feared becoming that main character. Fortunately, fate stepped in.
What changed me?
Fishing. Tournament bass fishing became an obsession. I loved competition and I enjoyed my fellow anglers. Bass fishing saved me when it provided that friendly port in the proverbial storm called the insurance business. And, it wasn't just fishing. An unexpected side gig grew in the form of writing fishing articles for Inside Line magazine. Life became enjoyable. I found peace of mind. Then, the happiness ended abruptly. Vertigo struck so strongly that I could not even walk. Hope for a meaningful life ended. I was becoming Willy, trapped in the never ending negativity of sales.
Looking back on that first vertigo attack, I now realize it was one of the best career changers that ever happened to me. Strange how life closes one path but reveals another in the process.
During those years of competitive fishing, I had filled hundreds of boring hours in motel rooms with writing. Initially, I wrote fishing articles, but I quickly expanded into novels that ended up stuffed in file drawers when I got home. Ironically, it took a violent seizure from vertigo to open my eyes. Life intended me to be a writer, not a physicist, or pro bass fisherman, and certainly not an insurance broker . . . a writer.
Manuscripts, manuscripts, manuscripts...where do I start today?
In 2008, my science fiction book, Space Chronicles: The Last Human War, became a reality. I now have multiple manuscripts in process and one currently being sold by my New York literary agent, Marisa Corvisiero. I finally know what it means to find one’s calling in life. It’s thrilling to wake up each morning and be excited about which novel I will tackle this day.
The monotonous hell of sales will soon die, yes, by my own hand. But, unlike Willy in Death of a Salesman, I choose story-telling as the method of extinction for the salesman in me. I sincerely hope anyone reading this blog will enjoy an epiphany such as I did. You’ll know instantly when it happens; when you find your calling. And, if it turns out to be writing, then I hope to be one of your best fans. Good writing, my friend.