I was inspired to create my own personal magnum opus after visiting the Getty Museum where we saw original paintings by the masters including Vincent Van Gogh. Van Gogh’s story, especially, inspired me. Here was one of the greatest artists of all time—yet he felt little self-worth. In fact, because his paintings didn’t sell well and didn’t receive positive reviews, he ended up battling with depression and committing suicide. Yet his art is highly prized today.
As a writer, it’s easy to feel little self-worth. Manuscripts are repeatedly rejected. Income is sparse. People seem uninterested in something you poured your heart and soul into. Very much the same as what Van Gogh experienced.
So I decided to pick a writing project to work on that I could pour out my entire creative energies into through writing—that was BIG, that would CHANGE MY WORLD, and that would leave MY footprint in history. It took awhile to decide on the project, but once I found it, I knew this was IT. I knew I could spend years working on this and feel that it was worthwhile in a big, huge way.
I think every writer should have a magnum opus they are working on in between all the deadlines, contracts, manuscript submissions, and rejections. It helps keep me going. It gives me focus when other aspects of my writing career seem out of control. It propels me forward toward a worthwhile goal even on days editors or critique group members inform me that rewrites are NECESSARY. Smile.