Friday, December 13, 2013

FEARLESSNESS by Mary Kennedy Eastham

I'm sure you'll all enjoy my guest today, Mary Kennedy Eastham. How fearless is she?

Thank you Brenda Whiteside for finally letting me have a go at one of my favorite words! Fearlessness reminds me of a quote I keep nearby for those times when I'm sensing I need to do something, that nagging something that may not be easy to do.

...The day came when
the risk to remain
tight in a bud
was more painful
than the risk it took
to blossom...

How do we as writers do that with our characters, release their fearlessness, making our stories more complex and memorable? Since actress Jennifer Lawrence at 23 was just named one of the most powerful women of 2013 in the latest issue of the Hollywood Reporter, it reminded me that we all need to HUNGER GAMES up our stories. Katniss Everdeen moves toward everything with zest and a fearless abundance of courage. She has her downfalls before hitting her stride but she never wavers. A life woven with threads of fearlessness doesn't come without some loss.

To give you an example from my own life, I am separated from my husband of 20 years. My heart tells me it's time to move on, sell my house, take my dogs someplace else, probably Southern California where I have some friends and where I'm hoping to connect with a more creative life than here in Silicon Valley, a place that is completely foreign to me skill-wise. But it's comfortable. My house is beautiful. And the mortgage is paid down to a place where it's very doable financially. But in spite of all my design tricks and talent, to include building a beach in the back yard, this is the house I shared with my husband. Just when I think I'm doing so well, a memory knocks me off-center and for that moment or afternoon I'm divorce mush. So there you have it, my occasional LACK of fearlessness!

We all look for solutions in our own life and with our characters. I've tried to break fearlessness down into baby steps. For me, that is making a January trip to LA to see what's what about renting a small house maybe or finding one of those temporary Residence Inns that takes dogs so I can see if this is a good plan for me.  The View is on in the background as I write this post. Actress Julianne Moore who has always said acting is a freelance gig so who knows if or where the next movie might be, shared this story with the panel. A few years ago, vacationing with her family on the beach, while her daughter was out playing ping-pong, she picked up her Hunger Games book and couldn't put it down. She called her agent and said, 'Get me in one of these movies.' In 2014, Julianne Moore is going to be in the next Hunger Games movie. Fearlessness is seeing an opportunity and just going for it. I wish this for myself, for my wonderful characters
and for all of you.

 For more info about my creative life and books, my amazing publishers keep an updated website for me at:


  1. Great, heartfelt post. Thank you so much for sharing.

  2. I love this fearless post and the example of Julianne Moore. Everyday people can attain their goals just as easily as the 'Juliannes' if we have their confidence. Good luck, Mary.

  3. Thanks for stopping by, Margo and Aubrey!

  4. Thank you so much Margo, Aubrey and Brenda.
    I put myself out there in this post.
    So glad it mattered to all of you...

  5. Mary, as one who has known you your entire life, I have always considered you one of the most fearless people I have ever known. You are a woman of great courage who has accomplished so much with self-motivation. How I love your selected poem!