This week, in lieu of attending How I Write, I will be writing about a writer I admire, James Patterson. The novels he has written and co-written have sold more than 180 million copies worldwide. In one of the two videos I watched on him for this blog post he said, “people need to relax to escape.” He said this when he was talking a little bit about all the responsibilities people in America are faced with everyday. I have been overwhelmed this semester with all my responsibilities. Consequently, when he said, “people need to relax to escape” it resonated with me because I don’t think I am relaxing enough, I feel as though I am always engulfed in a strenuous activity.
I enjoy doing a lot of things. However, reading is one of my favorite pastimes. In order to enjoy reading, I need to be relaxed, and since I am rarely relaxed during school, I don’t find a lot of time to read. The most relaxing activity I envision doing in my life is sitting in one of the chairs shown below, with my girlfriend or wife next to me, reading.
Albeit that I enjoy reading, I don’t know how to find the time to read for fun, while still balancing all of my other responsibilities. Patterson gave me an idea that I can implement in my life to help me incorporate reading in my daily routine. He said that when his son was 8, he and his wife made him read a novel for 30 minutes to an hour everyday. That doesn’t seem like a long time at all. I think I can do that, for at least 5 days out of the week, and I believe doing so will make me a happier person. Patterson also says that people should, “Do what you love, no matter what.” I found those words to be extremely powerful, and I think they’ll help me reorganize my priorities in my life.
One of my characteristics that I’d like to continue to develop is my perseverance. 37 publishers turned down Patterson’s first novel, “The Thomas Berryman Number” before it was finally published. However, the novel won an Edger award, an award given annually by the Mystery Writers of America to the best in mystery fiction, non-fiction television, film, and theatre published or produced within the previous year. His perseverance didn’t allow him to give up hope, and as a result, he has become one of the best writers in America. In my “Why I Write” essay I said I wanted to develop more confidence as a writer. After watching the video on Patterson and reflecting on what he had to say, I think he has the amount of confidence in his writing that I aspire to have in my writing one day. If you are interested in watching the Patterson videos I watched, the videos can be found below.