“Big deal,” I hear you saying. Of course you’re never too old to write a book! These days, anyone can become an author. It is so easy; by using “Publishing on Demand” and publishing on the internet, anyone can get a book out there.
So what am I talking about? I’m talking about the fact that good writing has no age limit – there is no expiration date on creative ability. There are writers who have written superb works that have been published by renowned firms, at an age when one would think nearly all of their brain cells had long ago vanished into the fog of incipient dementia.
You might ask for examples. How about prolific writer Judith Viorst? She has written memorable children’s books, adult fiction and non-fiction, and poetry. At age 81, she has written a jewel called Unexpectedly Eighty and Other Adaptations. At 79, humorist Dorothy Wilheim (host of radio show “Never Too Late”) has written her first book, No Assembly Required. At age 93, Maggy Simony has written Bridge Talk or What’s Trump Anyway? An Affectionate Look Back at Sociable Bridge.
So, how old am I? I’ll be honest. On my recent 80th birthday, my oldest daughter informed me, “You know, mom, eighty is actually today’s sixty.” I laughed to myself as I thought of her youthful perspective on age. Say that when you have the same aches and pains that I do! But then, I had another thought. I realized that my daughter was correct. I may be eighty years old, but I don’t feel or act that old. Am I bragging? Maybe a little bit. But it’s the truth.
I began to wonder how this was the case – what am I doing right? As I pondered that question, I realized that I am doing at least a few things that made me much younger than many of my calendar-year friends and acquaintances.I live an interesting and active life. And like, Judith Viorst, I have been writing since I was a teenager.
I am amazed at how many friends I have who have given up on life, who spend their lonely days watching life pass them by. Their old friends have died or moved away to Florida, and it never occurs to them that there is an unlimited supply of new people out there just waiting to be met. It was at this point that it hit me. Yes! Yes! That’s it. That’s what I’ve been doing right. I’ve been making new friends, and new friends open amazing new vistas for me, and keep me interested in life. The relationships I share with friends also provide me with inspiration and ideas for my books. This simple idea formed the basis of my new book, Make New Friends–Live Longer.
Although some sayings are considered trite and overused, they usually turn out to hold at least some truth. Our population is living longer, and there are over a million living centurions in the present day. Given that the common age for retirement is about sixty-five, that leaves a huge number of years to productively fill with life experiences and new relationships.
The world is already filled with would-be Dostoevskys. So why encourage seniors to write? Because, massive as the influx of writers and manuscripts is, there is always room for new, great, insightful writing, and that type of writing has no age limit. People who have a superb story to tell, plus the desire to tell it, should not feel that they are simply too old to start.
The limiting factor is not age, it is the mindset of the authors themselves. Talented senior writers should get their thoughts out there for the enrichment of posterity. Given the success of those who have ignored the calendar and have had their work see dawn, age is no barrier.
To learn more about Sunie and her new book, visit http://www.makenewfriendslivelonger.com.
Her new book, Make New Friends – Live Longer, is available to purchase at Amazon.