My little life or my big life? Is there such a thing as either one of those? And what about “my best life?” Is that a thing, either? And if they are a “thing,” do any of us live any of these all of the time?
Sometimes I feel as if I’m living a little life and chastise myself. Tell myself I should live my big life all the time. Is that realistic?
I hear so much about dreams, about being all that one can be, how one deserves to live a certain way. Then I think of refugees, and Syria, and India, and anywhere else in the world where existence is “day to day life.” They have no time to indulge in whether or not they are living a little, big or best or worst life.
I haven’t lived a very harsh physical life (and I am grateful for that) and so it’s difficult at times relating to someone else’s. But that doesn’t mean I’m not aware. In my big life, I try hard to do what’s possible to help those that I can.
Because I think we all live a mixture, I think being aware of what kind of life we live in a given moment is important. I think it can help us be empathetic and caring about other’s lives.
In my writing I try to incorporate life experiences, little, big, best and worst. I try to entertain, but also hope that when a reader finishes one of my stories, they feel the time spent with that story added to their best life. If it does, then I’ve succeeded in living my big life.
The IWSG question of the month is: Who's perspective do you like to write from best, the hero (protagonist) or the villain (Antagonist)?
I like writing from the protagonist's POV, though I have done the villain's a few times. I like to be in the hero's head, not the villains, because if the villain is really mean or brutal, they scare the you-know-what out of me, so don't go there often. I have enough issues watching scary movies!
The amazing and wonderful co-hosts this month for the IWSG are:
Be sure to sign up for the IWSG Newsletter for the latest information for writers. It goes out the last Wednesday of the month, which also serves to remind you of the upcoming blog posting day.
Also, here is a shout out to all of those participating in the A to Z Blogging Challenge 2019!!! It is their 10th anniversary so hop over and check out all the fun in April!
Whenever I start to wonder if I am living the best big life, I think of my big brother. When he was diagnosed with end-stage cancer, so many people offered to give him anything he could ask for...a trip anywhere, to do anything. He didn't want to go. He told me that once he realized his life was down to days instead of years, no place was more beautiful than his back porch and nothing was more important than a chat with friends and family while he watched his kids play.ReplyDelete
I'm not rich or famous, but I have the very best friends. Some I've never even gotten the pleasure of meeting. But one day we will, right? :)
I know what you mean. Sometimes life feels like an endless to-do list, and I've always felt pressured by sentiments like, "Live each day as if it were your last." Well, if this was my last day on earth, I sure as hell wouldn't spend it working, but if I stopped working entirely, I might be living each day as if I were homeless. Because I would be.ReplyDelete
Another great one is, "Be grateful for every day." Which is a nice sentiment, and I do try to write down at least three things per day I feel grateful for. But what if the day sucks? What if someone you loved died or was seriously injured? What if you got fired? What if your novel was torn to shreds by an influential critic and your sales plummeted as a result? Shouldn't we be allowed to "live little" sometimes?
The pressure, oh the pressure.
I totally agree that those of us lucky to have the opportunity live a mixed life. Personally, I would go nutso if I focused too much on one side of the other because of perceived failings or lost dreams and it's sometimes so nice just to say thank you, Lord, for the small, wonderful things that happen to us.ReplyDelete
Great job hosting, Lisa! Have a fun day :)
Having lived here in Europe for some while, I see the many things that break my heart even though I was raised in a home where poverty was present in the Deep South. Especially crimes against women and children and how we perceive women who don't fit the classic dream girl status bothers me. Thus my stories will always deal with women outside of the norm. Their plight concerned me greatly.
Thank for being a co-host.
Pat G @ EverythingMustChange
Reading one of your stories adds to someone's big life - I like that idea.ReplyDelete
I think we all get stuck in the little life sometimes. It's called a rut.
Thanks for co-hosting this month, Lisa. Your Pooh quote is one of my favorites! Like you, I'm somewhat of a sissy when it comes to villains - on TV, in movies, and sometimes on the pages of my favorite books. But I have to admit, the bigger the bad, the more heroic the hero. Pure evil is terrifying so my antagonists always have traits or a past or a reason that tugs at the reader. That's why I only watch horror through my fingers. Happy Writing!!ReplyDelete
Don't chastise yourself for living the 'little' life sometimes. Although it's good to dream big, you need to look after the little things too.ReplyDelete
I couldn't agree with you more. As I've gotten older I've become content with my "little life" and am every to grateful for every little thing I have because I know there is so much suffering in the world.ReplyDelete
Aw, I very much love that quote from Christopher Robin. It always puts me in a good mood no matter what's going on around me. Thank you so much for co-hosting!ReplyDelete
Ah, do you know what, I'd not considered that I'd find it scary to be in the head of my villain. I don't like scary movies either, so I could be in trouble. Hmm, I shall have to ponder on that one.ReplyDelete
Life is proving quite difficult at the moment here in that I'm being prevented from following my goals and dreams. Not permanently blocked, just demanding that I put other things first. I'm relatively patient, but I've been waiting too long now, so it's been emotional. I wish you the best with gaining the balance you seek.
Also, many thanks for co-hosting this month!
When I first heard "you are the hero of your own story" it made me think about my life and how big and far-reaching it it. What we do impacts people we don't even know. Thanks for co-hosting this month.ReplyDelete
It's a good thing that we do not always live the "big life," that we sometimes fall back into the "little life." How otherwise would we know how blessed we are to live the "big life?" More important is to be mindful of which life we are living at this moment in time, little or big or somewhere in the grey area in between. Thank you for hosting, Lisa.ReplyDelete
I've written a few stories from the villain's perspective. Villains are people, too, or at least that's what they tell me. :) Thanks for co-hosting!ReplyDelete
We can't live the "big" life all the time. We need the quiet moments for rest and renewal.ReplyDelete
You're so brave to jump into the AtoZ. It has been a few years since I did it, but I think I'll have to participate at least once more. It was a lot of fun.ReplyDelete
When you think about those who struggle just to survive you realize we have no excuse to just be getting by all the time.ReplyDelete
Thoughtful post and it's given me much to consider today. I may be too easily pleased, but I'm living my best life with a good book and a hot drink at my side. As you say, there are a lot of people who don't even have that much so I'm grateful for what I do have. Thanks so much for co-hosting the IWSG this month!ReplyDelete
I can't believe it's been 10 years for A-Z! I participated a few times years ago and enjoyed it.ReplyDelete
Thanks for the A to Z nod. Ten years is a pretty big milestone I think.ReplyDelete
I'm pretty content with my life as it has been. The bad parts have been comparatively minor and life has been good. Even a life like that is special.
Tossing It Out
I tried the A-Z challenge a few years back. For me, it was a good exercise in writing short pieces, as I tend to blather on and on. Best of luck, and thanks for co-hosting!ReplyDelete
Such a thoughtful post. I agree. I live a mixed life. Sometimes it can be one more than the other for a while until my life turns on its head and changes things up. The most important thing is that we are living. <3ReplyDelete
You and me both--on POV. I've read quite a few posts on this month's IWSG and we mostly seem to feel the same way.ReplyDelete
AtoZ--hmm... I am tracking it...
As you say some people are grateful to live a day without worrying about the things some of us stress over. I'm often inspired (briefly) by these adages that appear but more important is that we live our lives true to ourselves, which will sometimes be big and sometimes little.ReplyDelete
I incorporate a bit of myself and past experiences into my writing, but I'm not much of a villain...LOL. I haven't joined in the A to Z challenge in a couple of years, and now I'm busier than ever. So I doubt this year will work for me. But I'll be hopping around.ReplyDelete
Thanks for co-hosting, Lisa! I feel blessed to live in America, specifically Ohio. (Though not right now with this weather!) Hope you are well.ReplyDelete
Whooboy. I nearly had a nervous breakdown last time I did the A to Z challenge.ReplyDelete
Here's to embracing the wonders life gives us and living the big life when we can!
Thanks for co-hosting today, Lisa! I hope that you are having a good time! I've been fortunate to have a life rich in experiences, good and bad, and for that I am grateful. I do think about so many people suffering around the world, and I sometimes feel guilty that others face horrors and I have been mostly safe and secure. I've thought about writing a story from an antagonist's perspective, but I haven't, mostly because I don't want to spend all that time in a bad, scary space. I love trees of all ages, and I love Christopher Robin and friends, so thanks for the quotes!ReplyDelete
You made such a great point about including all those aspects of life -- the big and little, best and worst-- in writing. That's given me something to think about in my own writing. (And I'm the same way about scary movies! ::shudder::)ReplyDelete
Good luck with your writing. I'm sure everyone will find it enlightening.ReplyDelete
Anna from elements of emaginette
I think most people think they live simple lives, peppered with surreal moments. In truth, I believe we have little awareness of the huge impact we have on others, friends and strangers. One moment of kindness may have changed the life of someone you passed in a hallway. I like to insert those events into my characters' struggles, their shifting consciousness. In Forbidden, the main character was told he was a good man. It was a simple statement made innocently. However, since he believed he was anything but a good man, he became aware of a new possibility. It changed him. Good luck with your writing. BlessingsReplyDelete
I like what you say about readers feeling like our stories added to their best life. Thanks for co-hosting this month.ReplyDelete
I love moments of epiphany, where we reflect on the way we live our lives... only good can come from that.ReplyDelete
As for writing from the protagonist or antagonist perspectives....I've written from both points of views and I like writing from the villain the most. I find it's the most challenging to make the villain seem humane with emotional scars of their own, to get the reader to feel sympathetic. Also, I like to paint how the villain sees the hero - as the villain is his own story. Everyone is born innocent, and something in a villain's life turns his/her hearts cold. It's so cool to know what that event was, express the villain's pain, and make the reader feel sad for him while still rooting for the hero.
As for A-Z, did it once a few years ago. I may try again this year.
Thanks for co-hosting. I agree that life is made of small and bigger moments. When I feel mine is too small, I think like you of those who live so much more day-to-day.ReplyDelete
A good reminder to celebrate the Big and the Little. Thanks for co-hosting IWSG this month!ReplyDelete
Mary at Play off the Page
I love incorporating things into my stories too! THanks for co-hosting today.ReplyDelete
There is, indeed, tremendous pressure to "live big." I think you're on the right track about being grateful for the blessings with have. Whatever the challenges, I have a roof over my head, running water, food in the fridge, and freedom. Live big, live small, but live with kindness and gratitude.ReplyDelete
Thanks for co-hosting today.
Food for thought, Lisa. Like you, I think and consider the lives of the less fortunate often, only because they were born in another part of the world or into another culture. We may not forget the advantages and spoils we have, existing in a Western World. That being said, I would never judge the lives of people elsewhere, as most of them seem to be happy with the little things - having enough food on the table, being close to family, taking life easy. We should do these things more often as well. Being spoiled and set in our ways actually takes away from our freedom.ReplyDelete
Anyway, enough thinking and philosophizing. :-) It's important to be aware of how we are living and do something about it if we aren't happy. My goal in life is to have no regrets. I'm doing just fine and have basically done what I wanted (without the security of most), since I was 21.
Let's be the heroes of our own lives (stories). Thanks for co-hosting!
Oh! Thanks for the reminder about A to Z. I've participated for a few years in a row and I'd hate to miss it! @mirymom1 fromReplyDelete
I don't think it's a matter of living a big life or a small one (and who decides those definitions anyway?) We may not even realize what small things for us can have great meanings for someone else or in another way. How wonderful you incorporate all those moments in your writing.ReplyDelete
Your post Lisa, really moved me. It’s hard to be where we are sometimes when the rest of the world struggles even harder. I think we all have our own struggles for some reason or another and all we can do is our best at helping where we can. I like how you write too, giving your reader the best. Happy IWSG Day :)ReplyDelete
"I try to entertain, but also hope that when a reader finishes one of my stories, they feel the time spent with that story added to their best life." Me too Lisa! I read and write with this concept in mind.ReplyDelete
I've also been lucky in life; the bad is never as bad as it could be, the good isn't interesting enough to invite envy from others. I guess I've lived an ordinary life, and most of the time, I'm ok with that. But sometimes, I think I should dream bigger than just being happy with my life and accomplishments, or the lack of.
Jetlag and immediate tasks like laundry, email, and paying bills prevented my interaction with the question of the month until the wee hours of this day after we returned from our vacation, so I hope I can still 'join the party' with my full reply. Here's a synopsis, one of an author's favorite things to write (wink-wink)ReplyDelete
My writing is decidedly character-driven. We all know that the antagonist thinks that he/she is the hero of the story and is eager to achieve their goals, I give that character their full due.
Three longtime gal pals populate my Faith, Family, Frenzy series and each of them has ‘one of those days’ when villainous thoughts, words, or deeds dominate. And, I must admit I relish writing those scenes!
Thanks for co-hosting this opportunity to connect. This union of insecure writers is a boost for us all.
I love your opening reflection based on "living our best life."ReplyDelete
As an educator, I have the responsibility to influence a child's life every single day, so I always pray that my daily interaction with them impacts their lives in a positive manner.
I LOVE the A to Z Challenge and completed it for seven years straight - from 2011 to 2017. Wish I had time to do this tenth anniversary edition of the challenge.
Thank you for co-hosting the IWSG this month!
I agree with Feather Stone's comment. Small expressions of kindness can leave long lasting results. In my life, it's gone both ways. I've given and received random acts of kindness resulting warm and lasting memories. Thank you for co-hosting IWSG March blog-hop.ReplyDelete
I don't want to spend too much time in the antagonist's POV, since I already know he or she is going to lose out in the end. I'd rather spend time with the winner.ReplyDelete
Thanks for co-hosting this month's IWSG!
Heroes are the folks we usually want readers to identify with--to cheer for and cringe when their meaner sides emerge. But writing the villains... it's rather fun, but I don't often do it. Mine have to have a sound basis for justing wanting everything mean and nasty that my heroes don't--or do they?ReplyDelete
Thanks for hosting the IWSG this month, Lisa!
"Whispers of old trees" - I love that! Few places offer so much quiet refection as a walk in the woods.ReplyDelete
Writers house the knowing words of life and how they feel it. Sharing positivity. as you do, is also an act of kindness. Thank you ;-)
I love that quote about listening to the whispers of old trees! It reminds us to stop from our busy lives and listen to nature every now and then. Thanks for co-hosting!ReplyDelete
Lovely Lisa. I think by writing, you are already living the Big life most of the time. The little life is essential as it fulfills our basic needs. This reminds me of the pyramid of needs by ?, can’t recall the name, my hubby knows but he’s fast asleep next to me ! Maslow, I think the name is. Are you familiar with this theory ?ReplyDelete
Learnt about him in psychology during my business studies and have been obsessed with this pyramid ever since. I think your little/big life would fit in very comfortably into this edifice and we could add a vital line, something like empathy towards others.
Have a pleasant weekend. In the Basque Country for a few days.
I flesh out my antagonist's perspective in my modern noir mystery novels. I have to plot heavy, as you can imagine. Great post. Thank you for co-hosting!ReplyDelete