Friday, February 17, 2012

Art, Lines, Choices

Last weekend I had the opportunity to attend Life, the Universe, and Everything, a science fiction and fantasy symposium in which authors and artists converge to share knowledge. The keynote address was given by a man named James A. Owen, and what he had to say struck home with me.

Turns out, James and I are likeminded people. I have spent so many posts talking about choices, and the importance of making good ones, and this was the focus of his address. His words were a well-timed reminder to me.

He says (I’m paraphrasing) that art is nothing but a series of lines. It’s up to us, the artists, to choose where each line goes. Everything in life is about choices. “Your choices are cumulative, and every choice you make gives you the chance to make new choices.” Meaning (to me), that the choices we made as children have brought us to where we are as adults. The choices we make as adults will ultimately decide on the paths of our lives. And sometimes, our childhood choices come back to us in unexpected ways.

He then went on to spout a number of fantastically wise words that I started writing as quotes. I’m going to share the three most important points of his address here, and then I’ll give you information about where you can purchase a book in which you will find James Owen’s whole incredible, triumphant story. I bought it. He signed it. I treasure it because of the incredible message inside. Worth. Every. Penny.

1. “If you really want to do something, no one can stop you. If you really don’t want to do something, no one can help you.”

2. “Are you the kind of person things happen to or the kind to make things happen?” (Decide!)

3. “Never sacrifice what you want most for what you want the most in that moment. If you hesitate [in making the decision] you’ve already made your choice. It was probably the hard one.

And one last quote for the road. “If you are strong enough to overcome, you will. It’s YOUR choice.”

What choices are you making today that will affect your life, or the lives of others, tomorrow?

James A. Owen is the author of Drawing out the Dragons, the Starchild series, and the Imaginarium Geographica series. Also, he is a highly motivational, absolutely inspiring speaker. Check out his works at his website.

James A. Owen is right now GIVING away free ecopies of this book here. This is for a very limited time, so hurry, go fill out the form and download yours now!


Angie said...

I am bummed I got there too late on Friday to get into his speech. I got the book though! Can't wait to read it. It was great to see you.

James Duckett said...

I loved every word he said. I found an audio recording and I think I'll use that for family night sometime. Amazing!

Leigh Covington said...

I canNOT believe I wasn't already following you! It's ridiculous, right? *sigh* Don't worry - the problem has been fixed!

James' talk at LTUE was amazing, wasn't it? I loved every bit of what he had to say. Such an important life lesson for writing and everything else. :)

Nichole Giles said...

Angie, it was so great to see you too!

James, great idea. I may have to wrangle my kids into the same room and make them all listen to that, too.

Leigh. *gasps* I might have to check to make sure I'm following YOU now. I think I am, but you never know. Good to see you last week!

L.T. Elliot said...

Dude, I think I sat next to you at that keynote. But you found a few nuggets that I didn't write down and didn't remember until reading this. I'm so glad! And that book is awesome. Seriously so awesome!