Thursday, May 3, 2012

Keeping my word

Writers and runners have a lot in common. Both begin with seemingly impossible goals and all the optimism in the world. Both need training and patience to build the skills to finish the race.

The stages of a race are much like the stages of writing a novel. You need to know the course, but no matter how well you know the map it will not be the same when you hit the road.

Then there is the hard middle when the enthusiasm of the start line is far behind and the glory of the finish line is still out of sight. This is the time when both writers and runners have to dig deep and it is also the easiest time to quit, tap out, or start walking and hope to pick up some momentum after catching their breath.

Those who push through and chisel away at the distance will eventually close the gap to the finish line and then it is a matter of mind over body. The Final Sprint. In the end, scores are tallied and performance is measured but in the moment of crossing the finish there is a split second of pure joy in accomplishment. The END. The Finish Line. The applause and the crowd. That second of time is why runners run and writers write. Why they suffer the hard middle and worse the gut wrenching, nauseating, lung twisting final sprint. If it were easy everyone would do it, but its not and they don't.

So what?
For anyone caught in the hard middle or the dizzying challenge of the final sprint on any goal in life, especially in writing. Keep your word. Keep your promise to yourself that you will at least cross the finish line.


  1. Well said, Donna! That middle sure feels like the hardest and longest stretch.

    It's also worth a big, congratulatory hurrah that Inker Linda recently crossed the finish line with her novel. I applaud you!

  2. So. True. I couldn't agree more. On that subject, I think runners and writers have another thing in common and that is training. Nobody goes out and grinds a marathon into the dust on their first try. And nobody writes a masterpiece on their first try either. You have to build up to it.

    Congrats, Linda! I love your work! Here's to grinding it into the dust!

  3. Great analogy Donna! I am no where near being a runner but I can totally relate to the writing part. And thanks guys for the pat on the back. I'm glad I accomplished that goal.