In the above photo: Governor General Award and Two time Giller Prize winner M.G. Vassanji's book "A Place Within...Rediscovering India." (winner of the G.G.), a silk shawl worn by my father-in-law's Anglo Indian girlfriend circa 1940, the wooden box used to ship her grandfather's belongings circa late 1800's.
My favourite Gothe Quote begins:
“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one's favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way....”
To make a long story short I was working on a memoir of my father-in-law’s time spent in India between 1937 and 1944. I met a woman at the dog park who is an editor. She encouraged me to pursue my writing and perhaps take a creative writing course. I remembered a correspondence creative writing course offered at Humber College for people working on a novel or collection of poetry in which you would be guided by a Canadian author. I applied to the course and re-wrote a portion of the memoir as my writing sample. My new editor friend offered to read it and give me some pointers. Her pointers and encouragement gave me the freedom I needed to bring myself to the work, so I re-wrote and re-wrote and re-wrote, wondering sometimes if I was just changing the same things back and forth each time. I submitted my work. A week ago I received my acceptance. Today I received an email from the artistic director. It said “Your mentor is M.G. Vassanji”.
The quote ends “... Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.”