I read an article today in Parade about Neil Diamond still performing at age 70 and soon to be married for the third time after many years. Jane Fonda was on the Sunday Morning show. Also in her 70’s, she performs in a Broadway show or two and has produced several workout DVDs. I think about Betty White in her 90s, two TV shows and multiple appearances. As I hear them say, I feel like I’m in my forties or fifties. I have plenty of energy and my interests keep me alive and too busy to hear my bones creak and moan, so I imagine they don’t.
Those entertainers make me feel better. I’m almost there with them. I write mysteries full time, one a work-in-progress, one finished except for continuing editing due to more insights and critiques. I’ve had two mysteries published by a small press. I’ve co-written, acted and directed a play that was produced on stage. I’ve recently become involved in the 48 Film Project as a screenwriter and have produced four scripts to be considered for this upcoming 48-hour weekend. Will work on whatever is chosen this Friday night, attend the shooting of the film on Saturday, and rest while the editors edit Sunday and turn in the project. I’ve written and optioned several screenplays in the past, but this is a new experience and I’m loving working with the team.
So many exciting endeavors since I’ve retired. What we seniors seem to have in common is the passion for our work and play and what we strive to do each day. The LOVE of the work we’re doing. Along with this life style comes certain necessary responsibilities we owe ourselves – eat right, exercise regularly, write everyday to keep our brain active and sharp.I attend two critiques groups a week. They keep my imagination and writing sharp. Without them, I would have to work even harder to make the ideas not only flow but to make sense.
I go to several writing conferences a year. This gets me out to meet people, new and old friends, mingle with contemporaries, network, go to cities and towns I’ve never been to before, get away from the keyboard for a few days and energize.
Keeping healthy is vital to living a long and productive life. I have good genes and I heal quickly. My family lives close and I love them. I try not to interfere with their personal lives. My two daughters are in relationships, have children. Four grandchildren are adults now, so they don’t act like it most of the time. All of them have their problems and would love for me to solve them for them. I didn’t go to my parents or grandparents to solve my problems. I learned by experience. They can, too. Otherwise, my time and energy would be drained away. They have their lives according to their choices, and I have mine. My son lives with me. He will be 40 this year. He works and is a good companion and roommate. He doesn’t have the issues the others have so our lives are harmonious.
I’m not married anymore. Six times did it for me. At my age, I will and sometimes do enjoy a lover, but I’m happy being single and able to do what I want, when I want. The husbands I chose were great characters, I loved each of them passionately, but when the passion left and reality set in, it was time to leave. I have no regrets about my past. My experiences made me a better writer because I am able to look back and reexamine situations, certain choices, dig into the psychological pit.
My advice to all is to be passionate about something and commit your life to living with the riches of your imagination.