Sometimes my husband can be wise. Today was one of those days. He reminded me that often when we are pursuing something important, life offers a golden egg. It's shiny, gold and full of promise. We stop what we were doing and pursue the golden egg.
Golden eggs are distractions which seem good, sometimes almost too good.
My golden egg can as a complete surprise. I thought it was a terrific opportunity despite stomach flutters. After all, it was a big deal and natural to feel nervous, taking on a big responsibility. Being strategic, I thought through several plans, even had several discussions, asked questions and fully intended to create processes to fit into my work flow. Yet the more I learned, the greater my flutters became.
When I tried to reason with myself, I realized I was pursuing a golden egg -- a distraction from what is important.
Three years ago I made a commitment to my writing. It's been difficult, near-impossible to make a living as a writer, yet I have made great strides. The downside is that my success is not monetary. I saw the golden egg as a possible source of income, but realized it would consume my time and energy.
I had to reconsider. Tomorrow will be a difficult day. I will hand back the golden egg. It was an honor to be asked, but I must remain true to my own vision as a writer.
Sometimes a writing prompt takes us to a wild place. This week, the Rough Writers explored wild spaces in 99-word flash fictions. Enjoy the featured trio. If you like what you read, be sure to click "Read More" at the end.
California Dreaming by Sherri Matthews
She would miss it, the Californian Sun, but strapped into a seat on a 747 staring aimlessly at the sky map, what would it matter? She wasn’t coming back.
A last vacation with the kids, he said, but he never showed up, leaving her with empty explanations and she was sick of it.
Foam-capped waves danced on the sand, then sucked back again into vast sea, teasing her children in the chase as big sky melted into horizon’s dark line, Pacific sun sliding into purple day’s end.
Time to go.
A lone gull wheeled overhead and shrilled goodbye.
Loam by Anthony Amore
The hawk was never meant for me. She sat on the pile of loam, forty yards of fill delivered to beautify my under-landscaped back yard. I rounded the garage pushing the wheel barrow hoping to spread some dirt, humming and self-absorbed in the vision of an ever expanding lawn. She stares at me unflinching. In her talons a rabbit carcass; in her beak its entrails. My presence an intrusive violence inflicted on some sacred and primal ritual. Breaking our stare, angelically she sweeps above leaving behind a rabbit cooling in autumn air and me fixed with feet of lead.
Night Diving by Patricia Cumbie
She would never forget the way the boys glowed silver and blue before they threw themselves off the cliff into the cold, black water. The quarry was eighty feet deep and what was down there? She remembers shivering, rocks digging into her ass. Never got up the nerve. Girls didn’t.
She couldn’t believe she just sat there, looking down into his casket, his barely blemished face on a goddamn satin pillow, of all things. What was once arch and wild rearranged to be “peaceful” and still. She flinched. Recoiled. Decided. She’d go back and take that vault after all.