I recently had the pleasure of interviewing and writing about a talented musician and writer, Jeff Resnick, for an article about the re-release of an album he had created decades ago. When I had the chance to sit down and talk with Jeff, I was amazed by his passion for music, storytelling and people, and by his ability to just make things happen. I asked him to answer some questions about his process in the hopes of inspiring all of us to pursue our passions.
Catherine: Tell me about your latest project.
Jeff: ’What is my place in this world now that I’m retired?’ I have been trying to define and understand how I fit into this new-and-improved me. Suddenly, after 47-years, no work. No schedule. No demands. But more time for reflection, meditation, and introspection. And more time to explore the Internet. Quite by accident, I discovered the word “Senioritis” on Google, naively assuming Senioritis must be about senior citizens. But it certainly wasn’t about senior citizens at all! Rather, Senioritis is ‘a mental affliction common to high school seniors who have lost all motivation to work hard in their senior year.’ High school seniors are about to begin their adult journey. We Boomers are entering uncharted territory, as well, still relevant with so much knowledge and life experience to contribute that we’re just unwilling to fade away! And then I realized the answer to my opening question. It’s all about our mirrored stages of life. And from my current perspective 53-years later, the aging process actually increases motivation in senior citizens. It’s important for us to leave a footprint to validate our presence on our beautiful earth.
Catherine: What kind of response are you seeing?
Jeff: And so it began! Colleagues and acquaintances from the USA, England, Ireland, and Italy, who had written stories for publication in my latest book, “Our Earliest Passions Shape Our Future,” were eager for me to re-publish their stories on the Internet to get my newest project off the ground: “Storytelling.” After all, what better way to share our passions with other senior citizens than to motivate them to share their own stories? My earliest passion was music. But as I grew older, I began to understand that composing and performing music are no different than writing and telling stories. Regardless of the medium, the creative process begins with an introduction, which leads to the body, and ends with the conclusion. Indeed, storytelling and performing are the essence of communicating with people everywhere.
Catherine: Why do you write? Why are stories important to you?
Jeff: The positive feedback I receive from people around the world motivates me. Nothing is more exhilarating than watching your project achieve a new level of human communication. Most meaningful to me as a 72-year-old are the personal relationships I’ve established with people who value my ideas. Not surprisingly, the storytellers who chose to participate in the Storytellers online platform did so for the emotional gratification it provides them.