You see that hurricane logo behind my name? It reminds me who I am.
Last summer, two of my worlds had an ugly collision. I was attending a writers conference when I began receiving angry emails from a former president of the board I served. Gossip had achieved the upper hand in my organization and this person believed the worst. I spent my breaks calming the situation instead of taking advantage of everything the conference could offer. My euphoria over three agent requests fell to the storm of my organization’s problem.
My driving music that weekend was the full production score of Hamilton. I had never heard it before, and its creativity helped keep me going as my situation evolved. Then I heard “Hurricane:”
I’ll write my way out… Overwhelm them with honesty…This is the eye of the hurricane, this is the only way I can protect my legacy.”
(Lyrics by Lin-Manuel Miranda)
In that moment, I knew my path. I had to write my way out of this hurricane, using skills that seemed irrelevant when I first took the position. And I did. I wrote personal emails and mass mailings, each word chosen more carefully than the last. And slowly, things began to improve. The storm faded.
As I write this, another personal hurricane looms. I’ve put five years into one writing project, and for love and integrity I may need to rip out the piece that was the heartbeat of it all. But that’s okay. I know who I am in the eye of the hurricane, and I’ll write my way out of this one too.