Category Archives: Blog entries
A question that I have found hard to answer is: What do I want out of [insert situation/job position here]. A paycheck is the obvious answer of course in a lot of cases. It’s an answer a lot of us have to the question but rarely do we give that answer. We come up with some throw away line like “to build up my experience” “expand my understanding” or “move into the next step of my career”. But to give an honest answer? It’s likely to get a few extra numbers thrown into the bank account at the end of the day.
Now to be clear, I have never really wanted to be wealthy. I would be quite happy living in an RV, or a shack (preferably near an ocean). To live comfortably was always my desire out of my income.
So why bring all this up in an article about why I write? I’m glad you asked.
There are two distinctions I need to make, and the first is teased out above. Why do I publish my books? Is to make money. My dream is to quit my day job, bridges burning and just write for a living. In order to do that, I need to make something off the finished stories to pay the bills and such. You will find that is why pretty much every author publishes their works (getting it out to the public only counts as a reason if you always give it away for free 😉).
So that is why I publish, but why do I write?
I write for three main reasons. First, as a release/destraction from everyday life. Writing helps me process my emotions. In that way it’s a release, allowing me to express a large range of feelings.
Second reason is to finish the stories in my head. I have several stories running through my head constantly. Writing them down allows me to develop them in such a way that I can get them out of my head 😂. They do fade on their own eventually, but I have had the same story playing through my head for over a year before.
The third reason is… well, because I can. It kinda sounds funny to put it that way but hear me out. I am quite poor at drawing things out from my head. I cannot sculpt, or make pottery. I have the ability to string out my thoughts on paper in a creative way. It plays into the other two reasons, but it really is it’s own reason. For instance: I would love to make video games. My talents don’t lend themselves to game creation, writing books however is a perfect fit.
So that is why I write, well that and I enjoy it haha. Now let me ask all of you. What is your creative outlet if you have one?
This is the last blog of the month, and this subject ties into my plans for next month very well. In July I will be writing a series about the basics of writing. This is part of encouraging summer reading, I will have something fun to announce for July here soon as well.
Until next time, may God bless you and keep you.
Here we go again. I think this one might be easy to agree with. Expectations and their more dangerous nature is a well covered topic. It is easy to find any number of publications covering the subject. However, why are expectations so dangerous?
Most will argue that high expectations set you up for disappointment. So many people find the fear of disappointment so suffocating that they set the bar very low to avoid it. In truth the danger is setting your expectations too low not too high.
Disappointment is a good thing, which I covered in a blog a couple of weeks ago so if you missed that you can checkout the link here: https://christopherjhillger.com/2019/06/06/disappointment-is-always-a-good-thing/
When your expectations are low, they are easily met, and on top of that you build the wrong mindset. I had this issue not long ago when I launched my third book. Due to a number of perceived problems with my previous advertising, the delays the book received, and difficulty in getting noticed in the crowded market I set my expectations rock bottom. This hurt my book’s launch since I put less effort since my expectations were low. Low expectations hurt my audience since word didn’t reach them as quickly that the book was launched. Finally it hurt myself, putting my self esteem low (which most people convince themselves is why to set the expectations low in the first place).
Had I kept shooting as high as I could imagine perhaps growth would occur when I kept leaping for it. You see, if the bar is low you won’t get far. If the goal is set high, you will probably not get there, but you’re likely to get farther than where you get when the goal is easy to achieve. If you set the expectations low, you don’t grow.
Growing is painful. It’s a fact of life. Do you remember growing pains when you were young? My oldest son complains about them nearly every day. When you face disappointment it hurts, but you learn from failure, and learning is how you grow to improve it for next time.
So set your sights high, and you might be surprised by where you land.
Until next time, may God bless you and keep you.
While writing, working at your job, going to school, or interacting with others there are many things that can make your life more difficult. Disliking the activity, people you don’t get along with, and disinterest are just a few. I would argue that the most powerful one you face is disinterest.
When you’re disinterested it causes the worst responses possible. Apathy is the opposite of love, and as such it works to remove your desire to have any connection to the activity at hand. This couples into depression as well. I, like many other people, have mistaken depression to be a feeling of inescapable sadness. Depression isn’t always sad however, more often it is more like a lack of caring.
Not caring about something, or being disinterested, makes it exceedingly difficult to do anything. Depression is the ultimate expression of this phenomenon. Why do we have apathy then? There is a good reason for it though.
Apathy is a defense mechanism, a shield. It is hard for something to hurt you if you don’t care about it. This has great power over your emotions, actions, and interactions. As such when left out of check, it can ruin your relationships, or worse lead into a depression spiral. Getting out of this situation is easiest when you haven’t let it have control of too many parts of your life.
To conquer disinterest you must let things feel again. Your happiness doesn’t work without something sad to compare it to. To feel love you must be exposed to pain. It isn’t fun, but you must not let apathy control you. When it runs your life it only leads to depression, when you take control back you feel again and it won’t likely be pleasant. Don’t give up though, lean on your friends, family, or seek professional help. The best thing you can do is seek Jesus and a relationship with him if you haven’t already. God knows how powerful your emotions are, and will help you though the hard times when you lean on him. He doesn’t promise an easy life, but does promise you will never be alone. You can find more information on that at places like hope.org, or reach out to me or any number of Christians out there. Our purpose isn’t to judge, or ridicule, but to offer help to this broken world (remember we all are broken too).
Until next time, my God bless you and keep you.
Ever been disappointed with something or someone? You more than likely have, so have I.
For whatever reason somethings just never seem to live up to our expectations. Sometimes that causes us to lower our standards, sometimes it means voicing concern about the thing or person. Whatever you have been disappointed by in life so far, remember that disappointment is a good thing.
Ok, you’ve lost me you crazy guy. What do you mean disappointment is a good thing? It never feels good to be disappointed.
Well no, it rarely feels good to be disappointed; but that does not mean that it isn’t a good emotion to have. In fact it is a great emotion to have, about things and especially people. Ok, before you go off the deep end, let me explain.
What does it mean to be disappointed? Well, it means something or someone didn’t live up to your standards or to what you expected. Expectations and standards are things we rarely place on anything that we do not value.
You know that sports team you barely remember the name of? Oh hey, they won their last game. Do you care? No. Why not? Because you don’t place any value in them (not to say that their is no value in them, only that they don’t mean anything to you).
Your parents however are likely a different story. Whether your parent’s live up to your expectations or not, there is likely some disappointment with them your remember from growing up. Does that mean your parent’s are the worst in the world? No, and even if they are, the presence of disappointment means you place value in them, even if they weren’t the greatest.
I have been very blessed to have had such supportive parents growing up, not everyone does. But pretty much everyone has had a parent or guardian that was disappointed in them during their life (possibly they still are). This isn’t a bad thing, in fact it is the opposite. You see, the presence of disappointment means that you have value to them, that they love you.
Whether it is a person (like family, or friends), or a thing (like a favorite movie series) disappointment means that there were standards to begin with. You don’t place standards on things you do not care about, and as such a lack of disappointment in your life probably means you don’t value very many things.
Disappointment is good, and leads to you having strong emotions about that person or thing. Just remember to try and put a more constructive spin on your feedback, just like God puts in his disappointment with us. Humanity fails, on repeat, but God is always trying to give us advice in how to live our lives. He doesn’t give us some checklist, but actual feedback and purpose to our mistakes.
Until next time! May God bless you and keep you.
This is the last entry on the “creativity series” of blog posts. The final two subjects were really so related I figured we would tackle them in one post. In the first two entries we defined creativity, and explained why it is important. So we know what creativity is and why it is important, but why should we strive to be creative?
Creativeness is a truly interesting trait. Creative people tend to look at the world in unique ways. For instance, you have a problem at work, no wait lets be more specific.
You need to build a presentation for your boss. The boss wants you to figure out a replacement for an aging piece of equipment, lets say a printer to keep it simple. You could just look up a few and pick a printer that matches your needs within a reasonable price. That is the direct way to replace it, but what happens when your boss asks ‘why did you pick that printer? I heard good things about x’ or something along those lines. Well that is where the presentation comes in.
Perhaps you should create a little 5 slide presentation that shows, review scores, price, capabilities, customer support options, and ease of use. All those slides would feature different graphs, like a few bar graphs to show price comparison, a line graph for review scores, etc. Now when you present that to your boss, he/she will know you actually did your homework and that a though process went into your selection. A presentation like this would be a common application of creativity in the work place. The building of something original, in order to present an idea, or thought. Also this is more likely to get you some positive points with your boss by just putting together something with a bit of creativity.
That is just one example. Creativity makes you stand out. Everyone is unique so that doesn’t really set us apart from one another. Demonstrating your ability to be creative, and use that as a positive force in your life will always make you noticed from your peers.
‘Okay, so I get why it could be helpful, so I should get me some more of this creative stuff. How do I do that?’
It isn’t easy to come up with ways to be creative if you don’t have a lot of creativity to start with. Funny enough, creativity is actually obtained only from the influence of others. Let me explain. Some people are born creative, they received it from God. Everyone else becomes creative by watching, taking note, and attempting to apply the things the creative people are doing. Why do you think more people don’t write books, creative masterful pieces of art, or design engineering marvels? Most of those people are born with a gift, but the rest of us can do it too, just not on our own.
To become more creative, you need to talk to people, read article/books written by creative people, seek artworks, look over technical designs (if you can under stand them), or even go into nature and look at a glimpse of God’s pure creativity. Creativity is born of inspiration, so everyone can get it since we all can be inspired.
As the old saying goes, great things are born of 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration. I would argue that even though the percentages are so unbalanced that both the 1% and 99% are actually equally valuable. Without the inspiration you just sit in the same spot spinning your wheels and not knowing where to go. Creativity is the action of taking inspiration and forming it into a use within the real world. This still leads to more work, but it is work with direction and purpose.
I hope this series helped someone out there. Next week we’ll be starting another series, I’m not completely decided on what to start. Feel free to suggest a subject and I will do some research and cover it as best I can.
See you next week, and may God bless you and keep you.