Saturday, October 8, 2011

Writers, what will be your legacy?


We're Apple junkies in my home and, like the rest of the world, we mourn the loss of Steve Jobs. I wish I had even a small portion of his fearlessness. He was a visionary and a titan of business, and his legacy, to me, is immeasurable.

Here's a sampling of his inspirational quotes:

"Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma--which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of other's opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary."

"We don't get a chance to do that many things, and every one should be really excellent. Because this is our life. Life is brief, and then you die, you know? And we've all chosen to do this with our lives. So it better be damn good. It better be worth it."

"Almost everything--all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure--these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart."

These quotes remind me not to fritter away time, and to worry less about pride, embarrassment, or fear of failure. We're writers who are following our hearts, and that's something we can be proud of.

My amazing children are my legacy, but so is my writing. Whether we're published or not, our written words will remain long after we're gone. Articles, poetry, short stories, or novels will make some sort of dent in the world, even if it's small. That's a pretty cool legacy, don't you think?

If you own any Apple products, how have they changed your life? And what do you hope your legacy will be?

34 comments:

  1. Our computers are PC, but the gadgets are all Apple. The iPad has really changed my life. Not only is it like having a tiny computer with me everywhere I go, but I've totally converted to eBooks now.
    My legacy? My books of course, but I really hope I leave a positive impact on the world.

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  2. The first computer I bought in 1983 was Apple. $2500 for it and a dot-matrix printer! What a long way we've come, thanks to Steve Jobs. What an amazing man. I don't know what I would do without my computer. When I was a teenager I wrote stories in longhand then laboriously typed them on an old Underwood typewriter. I couldn't do this today!

    Some of us die young, some die old. Death will come to all of us, as Steve realized at the end of his YOUNG life. I think of his family who will miss him the most. Loss does makes us realize what the important things are--as you say, our children. First on the list for me too, Julie!

    Lovely post.
    Ann Best, Author of In the Mirror, A Memoir of Shattered Secrets

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  3. I admired Steve Jobs a lot. What an amazing man? He sure has left a gigantic legacy behind.

    Julie..my stories and books, I hope will make a teenie weenie dent in the world.

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  4. Not much of an Apple user. Own an iPod but rarely use it. I'm a PC myself.

    I'd better get my butt in gear and start making sure I can leave a legacy, at the moment, it's zilch: no kids, no widely published work, nothing! Kinda sobering thought...:-/ But I have been a schoolteacher, am now a martial arts instructor teaching both kids and adults, and used to work in cancer research. I'd like to think that I'd touched the lives of everyone I met in some way, no matter how small.

    J.C.

    Join me in the Trick or Treat Spooktacular! Could you help make the Grand Prize a brand new Kindle Touch?

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  5. Alex, you've definitely had a huge impact on the writing world!

    Ann, beautifully said.

    Rachna, I know your children's books have thrilled so many kids.

    JC, are you kidding? You're leaving a big legacy. Teaching kids, whether in martial arts or in the classroom, is huge.

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  6. When I was blind and recovering from all those surgeries, I counted clicks on my iPod Nano wheel to navigate the music it held. That music kept me sane all those long months. Every time I did so, I said a silent thank you to Steve Jobs.

    And a lot of people forget too-- no Steve Jobs, no Pixar. No Buzz Lightyear, no Wall E. No Finding Nemo.

    This post is a beautiful tribute and a very important reminder to us all not to waste a moment. Thank you for it.

    ~bru

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  7. If we all aspire to have the same outlook as Steve, life would be infinitely more productive and positive. Great tribute Julie.

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  8. Thank you Julie, Steve Jobs' life was priceless, and he gave so much while he was here. But more than that, he continues to give during his passing. Thank you for a beautiful tribute.

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  9. A friend and I walked by an Apple store on Thursday and saw one of the impromptu memorials. Fascinating. SJ was a person who followed through with creativity. That's a lesson for all of us. As for my legacy- I just hope I've made more people than not laugh, either through my words or my actions.

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  10. February--wow, what a story. Thanks so much for sharing that with us.

    Catherine...excellent point about outlook. That's such a huge part of life, isn't it?

    Karlene, I agree. I wonder if he'd be embarrassed about all the fuss, of if he'd think it was pretty cool.

    Leslie, you DO make people laugh. Both by what you do and what you say. AND you're an amazing, supportive friend to boot!

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  11. Lovely post as always, Julie. I'd like my legacy to be in the stories I write. Even after I'm gone, I'd like to know that someone still holds a part of my life. Writing is my passion, and if someone can enjoy that and gain something from it...then I can rest and know that my purpose in life is complete.

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  12. He really was fearless and inspirational. An amazing man who will be missed.

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  13. Lindsey, that's the beauty of writing, isn't it? Even if it's a poem written to someone we love, or an epic novel, those words create a ripple. Thanks.

    Jemi, so true. I can't comprehend the level of genius that went into that company.

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  14. Lovely post, Julie. My writing may never go anywhere, but I do believe I've left some legacies through my children and my students. I have no apple products that I know of, but the iPad is definitely en route to changing education. My students are getting them next month and I'll be at a 2-day training to teach me how to teach them! (I have 3-yr-olds with disabilities, btw. it should be interesting...)
    erica

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  15. We just got appleTV this week, and though it hasn't exactly changed my life, it's definitely soooooo cool. As for my legacy, I hope that I can draw people closer to God and the potential he sees in their lives.

    Becca @ The Bookshelf Muse

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  16. I got my first iPhone this year and I'm addicted, convinced I can't live without it. He was an inspirational man. I'd like to think my books and children will be my legacy.

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  17. The iPod and iPad are the only products I own and I adore both of them. They have brought joy to my life. Sounds corny but still true.

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  18. iPod only. Great fun for sure. My words are part of my legacy. I trust them, that is enough.

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  19. This made me so sad.
    What a brilliant brilliant mind.
    I hope he's designing ethereal music players up in heaven. :)

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  20. You KNOW it was a big deal at my house! I loved those quotes from his commencement address and how it applies to writers.

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  21. Apple has lost a visionary and creative genius, and the world has lost an amazing human being.

    Fitting tribute, Julie.

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  22. It's a long story, but my only Apple gadget is an iPhone, and I love it! I wrote a post last year titled Legacy of Words, in which I described how I *hope* my words leave an impression somewhere, but my biggest hope is that my kids see how I went for it and gave my all to something I love. And that they also see that even if it didn't bring me wealth or fame, it brought me happiness.

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  23. He was and still is an inspiration. I'm a big Apple nerd too, and was really sad to hear about this.

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  24. Legacy..I want to leave one that will shout hope.....to stand tall....and not be afraid to write and speak what's in my heart. If Steve can follow his heart and push past his fears to create what he imagined...I want to take that from him....and stand up and create what I imagine in my head....writing that will inspire. Happy Thanksgiving. ☺☺

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  25. He's definitely left a legacy, and it's great to think about what OUR legacies can be. I'd like to create books for entertainment, yes, but also to make people THINK. It's really exciting!

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  26. I love these quotes.

    Boy, it's so hard to plan a legacy. Sometimes we feel like we're failing when really we're succeeding. I think of all the great artists who weren't recognized until after their deaths. I guess it comes down to being true to yourself and getting your priorities straight every day. I'm sure Steve Jobs did that.

    Great post, Julie!

    Amy

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  27. i watched jobs' commencement speech twice this past week......incredibly inspiring life and legacy...

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  28. Whatever your goal, talent is not enough. It takes persistence and guts to be a success.

    Thanks for the reminder and the inspiration, Julie -- and Steve.

    P.S. Yes, I'm hopelessly attached to my MacBook Pro.

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  29. Watching Steve Job's inspirational speech and then reading all the tributes, he was an amazing man.

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  30. This is a great post. I think lots of writers are thinking about Steve Jobs right now, as they should be. I dedicated this week's Gratitude Sunday post to him - so grateful am I for the products he envisioned and brought to market, but also for his philosophy and way of thinking, which he freely shared with us.

    P.S. Come by my blog, as you are a winner of one of Linda Ashman's picture books! :-)

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  31. That is a powerful quote, and one I'd like to read again and again.

    My previous workplace lent me an iPod touch, which led to ereading among other things. I plan on getting an iPad.

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  32. I especially like that last quote. "We are already naked, there is no reason not to follow our heart."

    My very first computer was the original Mac, and I loved it! I called it Mic the Mac! Currently I am in love with a MacBook Air, but not sure if I can afford it.

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  33. What a beautiful post, Julie. Love the quotes. And I LOVE my Mac and my ipod so much that I am recently the proud new owner of an iPad. These gadgets have streamlined my life and made it so much easier.
    RIP Steve Jobs.

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