Old Dog–New Tricks
Updated: Jun 30
The good thing about being an "old dog" is learning that the saying might not always be true! Sometimes, you can learn new tricks. I have watched my wife (Marcee - not an old dog) write three books and fulfill one of her lifelong dreams of being an author by doing so. That is a pretty big accomplishment for anyone after retiring.
Marcee encouraged me to start writing short stories–somewhat of a shared hobby. I found it freeing to let my imagination run wild. After vowing that I only wanted to write short stories, times changed, and I decided to try my hand at a novel. Marcee was always there to read, offer constructive criticism (let me win when we disagreed), and read and reread manuscripts until her eyes bled. All of these things are critical when you are trying to learn new tricks.
Anyway back to being an "old dog". One "life lesson" that I took too long to learn is this: If the fear of failure prevents you from trying new things, you have also limited yourself from the opportunity to succeed, or at a minimum, to learn new things. The sub-lesson is that trying new things is a reward in and of itself. It is something to do for your own enjoyment and not the approval of other people. If others happen to like it: GREAT. It they don't, that is great also. It all depends on your motivation.
Personally, I am very proud and pleased with how this story came out. I loved researching the historical facts surrounding April 14, 1912. I like the story line; I like the drama of the historical tragedy juxtaposed against moments of humor.
I grew to know and like the characters with their strengths and flaws. I like the fact that there are several little "eggs" hidden in the story that some people might catch, but most
won't. If anyone else likes it, I will be very pleased. Actually, I will be more than pleased, I will be ecstatic! But...ultimately I wrote it to see if I could. And I did.
During these last few years, I have learned a lot about home construction and car restoration. I have written and recorded a song, written a bunch of short stories, and I started this blog. I have not mastered any of these new endeavors, nor do I plan to. But, I do wish I had taken more chances and put myself out there earlier in life. Not every project worked; not every project was pleasant (try to find an agent), but I did learn something from everything I tried.
No one reading this post, is expecting or looking for advice, but for what it is worth, here is some. Try something new today (or this week or this year) that you have always wanted to. Who cares if it works. Do it because you always wanted to. We are not getting any younger. Besides, everyone loves an old dog. You will surprise them if you learn a new trick!