Sailing the “What If…”

“I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.”           –Jimmy Dean

Jimmy Dean was raised in Plainview, Texas in 1928 during the great depression.  He dropped out of high school at age 16 to join the military and help support his family. In 1953, he landed his first record deal. He once told a reporter:

“I think the kids in school that laughed at the clothes that we wore and the house that we lived in … I think that was a good motivator. Every time they laughed at me, they just built a fire and there was only one way to put it out—to try and show ’em I was as good as they were.”

Which makes me wonder where the other kids’ parents found their money for clothes during the depression. Doesn’t matter because people can be cruel to one another no matter their situation and; often times, the way we receive their criticism depends on our own perception and self-esteem.

Regardless of other kids’ taunts or Jimmy Dean’s insecurities, he did well. But did you know that in 1960, right before the release of “Big Bad John”—his first major hit—Jimmy was skeptical of whether or not he could make it in the entertainment industry. He didn’t feel like his acting or singing was good enough to sustain a career. So, at age 32, he opened a slaughter house and started a sausage making business with his brother.

A whole book could be written on how someone chooses this career and the motivation behind it, but that’s not really my focus. However, if you’d like to read Jimmy Dean’s biography, you can find it here.

A few weeks ago … I mean a couple months ago, I announced that I would not be blogging for a while because of Nanowrimo—National Novel Writing Month. This event was held in November. My last blog post—that wasn’t one of Mel’s Cryptid of the Month creatures or a holiday greeting—was at the end of October. My intent was to focus on my goal with few distractions.

<chuckle turns into laughter>

Thanksgiving. Christmas. Decorating. Cookie making. Time with friends. Who can say no? And seriously, why say no? For me, life is about more than just writing. But the diversions stole some novel writing wind from my sails.

Also, in November, something happened to Mel and me that broke our writing-ship’s rigging. Sails flapped wildly as the wind completely changed course. We found ourselves—not really grappling for control—but standing back, assessing wind patterns to see if we wanted to tie up the canvas and ignore the wind or fix the sails and travel in this slightly new direction.

On the bow of our writing-clipper, dubbed “What If…”, Mel and I studied the map of our future. After prayer, research, and lots of discussion, we decided to adjust our sails. Instead of writing the novel in November (or December), Mel and I committed to a new project. We’ll have more about this as time goes on. If you’d like to know more about what’s happening, check out our newsletter. The next issue will come out January 16th with a big announcement. Sign up is right over there in the right hand side bar.

We can’t necessarily say our destination has changed, but our course has definitely shifted and broadened the scope of our writing and illustrating. We’re zigzagging across the ocean instead of making a straight shot. But in all fairness, we sort of set ourselves up for it by collaborating. Most of the day, our brains spin with new ideas that we bounce off of one another and can’t help but play around with. That’s why this website changed names from Belied Outcast Legends to Cryptid World. Our brand is growing, evolving, and fine-tuning.

For 2019, our sails are set. It will be a year of focus and hard work. But it’ll also be an adventure centered around marvelous monsters, living lore, romance, and so much more. We can’t wait to share it with all of you who love the idea of “what if…”

What adventure do you have planned for 2019?

Are you glad to put 2018 behind you?

Have you ever experienced a drastic career change or change in your life’s course?

BTW, if you’ve never heard “Big Bad John,” it’s classic. Here it is on YouTube.