Okay, Listen Here

Okay, Listen Here

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Free The Tiger

I heard a story recently about a Siberian Tiger that had been kept in captivity for a very long time.  He was found in horrible conditions and allowed to roam free in an enclosed, protected area.  However, the tiger never strayed from the center of his nature perserve.  He paced 12 feet then turned, paced 12 feet then turned, paced 12 feet then turned, over and over again, walking the very same steps he'd walked from the time he was a young cub, retracing the circumference of the very cell that had kept him prisoner.

Free to roam, to stretch his legs, to explore and learn, the tiger was trapped in a cell of his own making.  How often do we fall into this trap?

I've been pondering this for days.  And what I've realized is writers tend to be like this tiger.  Why?  In the beginning of our careers, we're told how to write and to write what we know.  We follow formats and guidelines, genre and styles, only to be rejected because we aren't original enough or we're not submitting to the right line.  When we try to launch our ships, the very pristine prize we've spit-shined and polished, we're held back by a weighted anchor, unable to move full steam ahead.  Sometimes we hold the anchor below the surface, subconsciously sabataging our efforts.  Like the tiger, we forget there is a world beyond our guidelines.  To be honest, we're afraid.  Why do we fear artistic freedom?

I've been challenged by the story of this tiger to remember why I write.  I write because I love creating worlds with characters who desire love and yearn for the freedom to inhabit that love.  So what's holding me back?  What's stopping me from experiencing, through my characters, a love that's stronger than the circumference of a 12 foot by 12 foot cage?  And who wouldn't want to read about a powerful love like that?

I'll sum up what I've learned this past year, by saying this.  Write as if the world is at your fingertips.  Strip away the cage and bare yourself to the world.  Be courageous, not held prisoner to an invisible fence that's preventing you from stepping over into success.

Be the tiger, free and wild.  Remember at the heart of a good book is the power of the heart.  And the heart can defy any odds.

Are you trapped in a pattern that you think you cannot escape?  Think about the tiger.  Be the tiger.  FREE the tiger in you!

Katherine Bone
DUKE BY DAY, ROGUE BY NIGHT Oct/2012 Crimson Romance


  1. Thanks Katherine...for the encouragement and the inspiration to move forward. My cage opens up next Monday morning at 6:25am when the bus carries V away to school. Nine whole hours to write and build and play and scheme...every single day. I'm counting the minutes....ready to pop!

    1. Lesia, I know how much you must be looking forward to some 'free' time. Fill the well now so you can sail away every morning, starting next week. Woot!