There comes a time when you have to jump right in with both feet and do what you love. (Before the Bath, William-Adolphe Bouguereau, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)

Welcome to the personal site of Honor Chrystie, creator of The Sea Pearl. I am an essayist, author, and sometimes editor. Most of my writing and research projects over the past twenty years have been carried out under the boring, but safe, auspices of a cultural or educational institution. These have involved content for tours, newsletters, or souvenir books. Other freelance projects have been for magazines, newspapers, and websites.

After recently compiling a historical reference book and then beginning work on an online magazine without a rest between the two, I took an inventory of my current situation. I felt tired and blunted after straddling two sets of conflicting aspirations for many years. The one that paid the bills was usually pleasant and gave me some professional and social standing, even if it had turned into a dead end. For years I normed my life to that path, even while yearning for the other path—the risky one.

By then, I had already created this site as a motivational collection of “curiosities, essays, and guiding principles” that had inspired my life. By sharing these things, I was unconsciously teaching myself on a deeper level. I began to own what I had always sensed: that in spite of the fact that I had worked with the public for so many years and love helping people, I actually hated being identified as my job position instead of who I really am. I went through life feeling like two people.

When the opportunity came to freelance my writing, I took it. By established precedent, I still write for a certain kind of audience, but it is not always the same audience as the one I write for when I write what I want. So while I still maintain my established public persona, I now write under a pen name as well. I found my freedom and happiness in anonymity, which gives me the privacy and creativity I crave while carrying on a rather ordinary life.

Gone are any references here to works published under my public persona, but I leave those particular pages containing what I believe have been of the greatest practical benefit. The pages on cooking and decluttering, will likely strike some as off-topic, having no obvious connection with the deeper matters of finding one’s life purpose. I assure you that, while they require an initial investment of time, mastering these things frees up time for doing what you really want by adding order, respectability, and mental peace to your life.

So. . . as I head off for new adventures, know that it is in the service of following my own star. The weights that grounded me for too long have been stripped off, and I have jumped into that pool of purposeful endeavor with both feet this time. This is a truly happy moment.

But it is not from space that I must seek my dignity. I should have no more if I possessed whole worlds. By space the universe encompasses and swallows me as an atom . . .  by thought I comprehend the world.

Pascal, Pensées (1669)