Friday, February 10, 2012

The Knack

Writing (Photo credit: jjpacres)
" This is a great story, Kathy, You might want to consider writing for a career choice." That was the comment I received on an assignment from my sixth grade teacher. We were asked to write a story about what "thing" we would like to be if we were not human. It also had to be in the form of a poem. I wanted to be a diamond ring...right!

 Several years later, I was asked by some colleagues if I would like to write for the high school newsletter. I thought about it and thought about the time it would take away from "having fun", "getting all my school work done" and  "other activities" like debate and drama club and did not choose to do it. "It's just not my thing," I shared.

Biology 101
Biology 101 (Photo credit: Kevin Krejci)

English: Sixth grade science
Image via Wikipedia
"Does not appear you truly comprehend the Embden-Meyerhoff pathway" (C+). This was the comment and grade given to me in Biology 101 by the head of the department, destined to "weed out" from the class of 150+ students, those who should not stay in Pre-Med.  I was one of them who chose to eliminate myself from the potential candidates to take the Hippocratic oath by second semester Freshman year.

I switched my major, graduated and even owned a successful business in my major for over twenty years, and I did not write again, until I reluctantly agreed to help a friend who wanted to write some personal stories to share with her mother before she passed away..One day she turned to me and said, "I can't write this well, please would you do it." Feeling rather obligated and loving her too much to have her not fulfill her wish prior to her mother's death, I put her thoughts into words. After she gave the gift to her mother, she casually mentioned one day, "My mother said it was so well written she thought it had been done professionally and thinks you are am amazing writer, thanks so much."

Books (Photo credit: henry…)

"This report about my child made all the difference in getting the services I needed" commented one of my clients one day . She went on to say,"They(school officials)were impressed with how thoroughly you documented her needs.. We cannot thak you enough.."

Bit by bit , it began to dawn on me that perhaps I could write; at least about some things. It also began to dawn on me that I had been writing in some form for a very long time. There were stacks of baby books for each of my children. I chose books with nothing but blank journal pages so I could not only write all the milestones I wanted to savor but words of wisdom and observations about life at every stage for them. I stopped writing in their baby books when they went to college, but never really stopped writing.

That is often the way it is for a passion we develop but keep on the back burner for years. We hear the comments from others who appreciate our skills but we don't validate their worth as more than "talk". We continue to enjoy pursuing our talents but don't recognize our enjoyment as more than hobbies. Quite honestly, we often are totally unaware we have a knack until something hits us over the head and makes us realize maybe out knack is really our gift and we should share it.

I discovered it throught a phone call in November of 2010, when best selling author Ron Hall contacted me and said, " I have just finished reading ONE MORE SERVING and I am about to write your Foreword and I wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed your book."  That day it became apparent, maybe I had a "knack" for writing.
Cover of
Cover via Amazon

Everyone has a knack for something. Sometimes we need more validation than a few compliments from friends or relatives to realize what it is. Sometimes it takes a crisis for our knack to make itself apparent and sometimes it takes the self realization that "this is my gift" that begs you to use your knack well.

Our "knacks" are wonderful gifts given for a purpose. Not acknowledging your knack or its purpose is like being given a gift and setting it on a shelf without ever opening it. Often   when opening our gift, we are not so much surprised as relieved to discover it is something that completes us and pursuing it is our purpose.

Have you discoverec your knack and what are you doing to share your gifts? or Is your knack sitting somewhere in the cobwebs begging for you to give it some care and attention?

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  1. Hi Kathy,

    My name's Katie, and I came across your blog from I love your recent post about finding your 'knack.' I also like the whole idea behind your blog. I just finished a novel, and I'm working through revisions. I of course have those moments when the doubt creeps in, so knowing a blog like this exists is great news to me! I'll be following.

    Feel free to keep in touch!


  2. Katie,
    Thank you for such generous praise. Yes, working through those revisions can seem overwhelming. Everyone has a knack for something. Looks like you have discovered yours. Best of luck and do come visit often.