What Remains Undone

My messy book closet. June 6, 2013.

You can count on me to set goals and aim hard to hit them.

Yet for years, I’d neglected one of the biggest life goals I’ve ever had.

I needed prompting to right my course.

A couple years back at the holidays, quite apropos of nothing, my father asked, “Leslie, how’s the great American novel coming?”


“Oh, Dad. I haven’t written anything in years. Not fiction, anyway. Focused on other things, I guess.”

He pondered that for a minute. He remembered what I always wanted to be when I grew up.

And he replied, “If you never write a novel, that’d be a shame. It’s what you’ve always wanted to do.”

For Christmas, he gave me a bunch of books about writing. But he didn’t say anything more.

The exchange got me thinking. Did writing still matter to me? Did I, in fact, even still, with two wonderful businesses growing and so little time on my hands, want to write? If I never wrote a novel, would I care, looking back?

And I realized:

Yes. Yes, I would care. Very much.

So that novel? On the goal list for 2013. The objective is not to have something ready for prime time. I just plan to have the very first, very rough draft.

And so far, I’m on track to hit my target. (Though finding the time and the focus has proved challenging!)

What have you said you’d do for years—and haven’t?