I know not everyone will agree and, some of you may have in fact already written me off as a nutcase, but I say this as a person who has enjoyed a lot of luck in her life. Yes, Lady Luck likes me and has smiled down on me more often than not so why would I break up with her now? Of course there’s always the chance that I’m jinxing my good fortune right now by merely mentioning it but, as I’ve already had fifty years of great luck, I can hardly complain if it all goes
There are the luck sceptics, who claim that we make our own luck and I’m sure they can back this up with some sort of rational, scientific evidence but all I can say is – don’t you believe it. I don’t deserve my good luck any more than people whose lives have been blighted by sheer bad
luck deserve theirs. Life is not that straight forward and it seems to me that most of the events that happen to us are pretty much random. I’m sure we all know people whose lives are like horror stories with tragedy after tragedy befalling them. My neighbour lost her mother, husband and daughter within eighteen months of each other all in completely unrelated accidents. Explain that with your scientific evidence if you can!
I suppose my first stroke of luck was being born into a large, cohesive family with lots of role models and support. I had eight feisty aunts just on my dad’s side that bedazzled and inspired me in equal measures. There’s no doubt that I was a spoiled and indulged child but, more importantly, I had the value of an education drilled into me from before I can even remember. Some would argue that it is this strong, early foundation than ensured my good fortune and to some extent I would agree but luck has also played its part.
I’ve been incredibly lucky with the people who have come into my life and most of these encounters have been down to chance, our paths could have missed just as easily as they collided. Supposedly there are lots of bad people out there hoping to take advantage of us or cause us harm but I haven’t met any. I have only ever met kind, warm, funny people, who have enriched my life immeasurably by being in it.
Likewise, I’ve been blessed with good health. For the first time in my life, I find myself now afflicted by mystery headaches but, as inconvenient as they are, they have made me realise how bad other people have it with their health. Talking about my own health opened up the floodgates both online and in life and people have been very forthcoming in sharing their health
problems with me. Some of these problems are both debilitating and lifelong, making my own complaints seem trifling and petty. Let me tell you, it’s nipped my hypochondria in the bud and made me realise that I should be thanking my lucky stars for the fifty years I have enjoyed with little more to moan about than a common cold.
Committed as I am to the concept of luck, I am willing to concede that some might denounce my devotion as a very handy means of letting myself off the hook a little bit. Sometimes it’s easier to believe in luck than it is to have to actually work hard to make something happen. This could be the case for instance where my writing is concerned. Part of me believes that any success will be down to luck – maybe someone will read something I’ve written; spread the word and BOOM the whole thing takes off like wildfire. If luck isn’t on my side, however, so be it. It would be nice if people actually read what I’ve written but it’s not going to change my life either way.
I know a lot of writers will be sneering in disgust, thinking about their own marketing strategies and good luck to them. I’m not ashamed to admit that I can’t really be bothered with it all. It’s far too much like hard work and the kind of work that drains the life out of me. My sales pitch is so inept it is probably despite rather than because of it that a few readers find themselves straying onto my Amazon page. Maybe part of the reason my heart’s not in it is because deep down I know there’s little point. I consider myself to be a typical reader and, even though I use Twitter relentlessly as a marketing tool, I rarely have the time to explore the links provided in other writer’s tweets and can count on one hand the number of books I have felt compelled to download as a result of them. I have a kindle full of free books and will probably have to live to be 106 if I want to stand any chance of actually reading them all. I believe, and maybe this is where I’m taking the lazy route, that the market is so oversaturated only a stroke of luck will make any writer stand out. There is another alternative of course and that is that I am doing readers a disservice. Maybe other people do take the time to look at links and have actually read the first couple of chapters of my books and made a positive choice not to download. Whatever the truth of the situation is, I think you’ll agree that my luck theory makes the situation far more palatable.
Writing’s not the only area where I could be accused of hiding behind Lady Luck’s skirts. The saying goes that a person is either lucky in love or money but I am lucky in neither. There are those, however, who might point out that I have no money to speak of due to the fatal combination of being both workshy and a spendthrift. As for love, I’ve never even come close to
meeting the man of my dreams either through a lack of kismet or my own idleness. I have single friends who have pursued their love lives in the same way they might pursue a dream job. They have dated relentlessly, meeting men online, in bars, at special single’s events, sometimes with great success, sometimes not. Frankly, it’s all too much like hard work just thinking about it. I simply can’t be bothered. Plus it’s not like I’m going to be an alluring commodity, I’m guessing my workshy/spendthrift combo would pretty much get in the way of that.
Strangely the biggest stroke of luck in my life is being blessed with a personality that derives no satisfaction from status or money. When I see friends driven by ambition and gaining so much fulfilment from their jobs, I thank God I’m not one of them. My needs are small and, as long as I have enough money to live on, I’m happy. Luckily, I have the kind of skills which allow me to work only when I want to. I value time and freedom above anything else which means I am easily pleased.
I know that most of our lives are a combination of luck and our own design but I feel I should acknowledge just how good Lady Luck has been to me. Even so I don’t take her for granted and I know it could all change in a heartbeat. The secret to being lucky is to make sure that when your luck’s in you appreciate it with all you have and when the chips are down – well we all have to pay our dues some time.