A few months ago I walked into my local bookstore to buy one thing. But as it always happens, I strolled around, taking in the sight of new releases, bookseller recommendations, classic literature refurbished with modern day covers… and well, I left with more than what I bargained for.
Going to any bookstore is one of my favorite things to do.
On that particular trip, I snagged a book called 642 Things to Write About. I bought it since I am always looking for ideas for my students, but also for myself. I bought it to be inspired and to write! I flipped through seeing endless possibilities and excitement washed over me. I would write that very night!
But as these things often happen, to me anyway, it wasn’t until last night that I took a look at the book again.
Better late than never, as they say.
As I scanned the pages, I remembered why I bought this book. It has some of the most creative, unusual and thought-provoking prompts I have ever seen in one book. Some that stood out? “You are a fifty-three-year-old woman living in Chicago. Write a letter to Santa.” “Five things you wished you’d asked your grandmother or grandfather.” “Time magazine has just named you ‘Person of the Year.’ Why?”
But it was the introduction to the book that caught my attention this time. I had never read the letter to the reader written by Po Bronson of the San Francisco’s Writers’ Grotto which explained how this book came to be. In just one day all 642 ideas were compiled from thirty-five different writers. He thought a project like this would take a month. In the letter, Bronson writes:
“You never know what might happen. In a single day, if you hit the right nerve, you have something—maybe it’s the start of something, maybe it’s the whole thing.”
This line immediately stood out.
Lately, I have been feeling more and more exhausted by my non-stop days, responsibilities and obligations. The only way to get it all done? I follow a strict routine, sometimes down to the minute, and drink lots of caffeine, going, going, going. It’s okay. That’s just how it has to be sometimes. Truthfully, I am grateful for the work, to be working, for all my students this semester and I know a break is around the bend. Sometimes though, the days feel like a blur of activity and in those moments I wish the days weren’t all blending together.
But this quote reminds me that sometimes a single day can bring significant change.
Even though the days may feel like they blend together from time to time, I never want to forget that it’s really not true.
Any day can be a day where something… anything… everything changes. Any day can be a day where something… anything… everything is possible. You could be offered your dream job. You could hop on a plane and land in a new place, adventures waiting. You could meet your soul mate. Your child could be born…
Today could be that day. Tomorrow too.
Thanks for the reminder to never take a day for granted. There’s just as much power in twenty-four hours as there is in twenty-four days, months, years. You just never know.
And while that can be terrifying, it can also be magically wonderful.
Here’s hoping today is magically wonderful.