Wednesday, December 31, 2008


In case all y'all didn't know, I live may lives. One of those lives is a children's writer. It's wonderful and creative and mostly inhabited by women. BUT one of my dear friends is Mr. Jim Averbeck. 
About a year ago Jim and I travelled together to a conference and as we rolled merrily along we disclosed things to each other about ourselves. One story he told has stayed with me, it is the story of his Year With No Fear.
About a year before,his partner of several years had had a very scary incedent and Jim began to fear everything. He didn't leave the apartment, he didn't accept invitations to anything. His artwork suffered, his writing suffered. He was in short- unhappy. 
Then he and his partner went to some wonderful warm place and in an inspired moment he had an epiphany. He was tired of feeling depressed and sad, always waiting for another shoe to drop, another crisis to avert. He decided that the New Year would be for him The Year of No Fear. And to celebrate this he and his partner jumped off of a cliff-literally! A 60 foot cliff!
And they didn't die! 
And so began his YWNF. He began his art projects anew, he rewrote and submitted a long held manuscript "In a Blue Room". He reconnected with his friends, his allies and himself. He told me it wasn't always easy, but after jumping off of a cliff what else could be so scary?
The happy result of his Year is this book- "In A Blue Room"
Illustrations are by Tricia Tusa. This charming book is nominated for many awards this year, and has a starred review in the Publishers Weekly. (No mean feat- let me assure you!). 
So after Jim's story I have reminded myself many times to live my Year with No Fear. I advocate it to all of you too! That doesn't mean you have to jump off a cliff ( eegads!) But I want you all to do something different- something that you are afraid of doing because it is out of your comfort zone. I want you to take the literal leap of faith that I know you are all capable of!
I want you to ride bareback, or rescue a horse, or walk ten miles for a cause. I want you to join a theatre group, or enter a horse show or stand  up at a City meeting and give your opinion about something you believe in. 
Make 2009 the Best Year of your lives!
I dare ya!


Mikey said...

Oh that's so good!!! I like that a lot!!! The Year with no Fear!!
What a great story!

The Wife said...

Well I'm pumped up to go do something now. Don't know what but I'm ready for it!

Very inspirational! Here's to the Year of No Fear 2009!

gtyyup said...

You're's on my list for 2009.

Thanks for that inspirational post...I needed it~

Anonymous said...

Wowzers!!You are a Jill-of-all-trades!! A children's write..VERY cool !
Well, I'll have to think on this no fear for a tear stuff !!
Have a great New Year !!

Reddunappy said...

Wow wonderful story. 2008 was a horrible year for me. In 2009 i want to join a natural horsemanship group that meets around here and do something for me! With my horse. I plan on having my year with no fear!!!

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

Thanks for sharing that story. Your post is inspiring.

Jennifer MacNeill-Traylor said...

What a great post! Thanks for the advice:)

Vodka Mom said...

I LOVE that story!!!

I am going to the conference at the end of January.
Children's Writing, etc. I am SO nervous, and don't know what the hell I'm doing.

XoXo Punchy! said...

VERY nice sista...this is why I love you and your writing so much! We are so very much alike and yet you continuously amaze me at all the stuff you do that I know nothing about! I am always stepping out of my comfort zone in the business world, but for hold back in my personal life...thanks for remiinding me to get off my ass and just DO what makes me happy, regardless of how much it scares me!

WHEN are we going to plan something together, huh, huh???

NO fear fear!!!

The W.O.W. factor said...

This is a wonderful story! And ya know, was telling Cowboy last nite, that yep, 2008 sucked BIG time...but lets take a leap (and not from a cliff..heights scare the bajeezes outta me!) into 2009 doing things out of character for leaving home once in awhile...along with too many others to mention!
Great, great Post!
You have a wonderful New Year!

{i}Post said...

Wow! I just posted about fear today, so this post really hit home for me! Thanks for sharing!

Danette said...

The few months after my second girl was born I was fearful of everything and I, too, got tired of it. I printed out, in big-block-black letters, "I lead a fearless life". I taped it up all around my house and I would repeat it to myself constantly. It worked, although i haven't jumped off a cliff--or written a lovely children's book either---hmm, which one should I do??

Lil Mama said...

I am so glad your MY mom. I plan to hold you to this whole year of no fear thing. I think I am going to try a year with no beer. Just kidding I have a little boy. I need a lot of beer.

Anonymous said...

That is quite a story and not one that we read every day. I have enjoyed catching up on your blog. I look forward to a return visit.

BrownEyed Cowgirls said...

Very inspirational! I guess you could say that I made that decision too. It's never that I fear things, it's just that I get lazy and complacent. Last year was the year for thinking about how much I wanted to get back into the horse training/showing/rodeo world seriously...This year is the year to DO IT!!

Train Wreck said...

oooOOoo how great for your friend. I will have to look for that little book. I still hink it is so great that you wrtie childrens books,that you WRITE! Talented inspirational lady. You will have to let u know what you "jump" off this year!

C-ingspots said...

Well thanks, I just might have to try that. Imagine a year with no fear. I think I like that...and thanks for the challenge on the 10 things too. Will give that a go real soon. Happy New Year to you!!

OneCowgirl said...

Can't wait to read the book. Love it - yes, 2009 - I need to make some changes which I am fearful of. Thanks for the post. Check out this program for children's authors - it doesn't pay much but its a great way to interact with children
Let me know if you are interested in participating and I'll hook you up with them -
Where can I purchase the book??

Breathe said...

No fear? I'm good with that, now will someone please tell my HORSE?


I want to get a few more of my (amatuer) children stories recorded. I've done one and it was lots of fun. Hopefully I can get a few more in 2009!