Saturday, September 23, 2006

I have a confession.

I haven't been working much on the book proposal this week. But that doesn't mean that I haven't been busy writing. With a flash fiction writing class starting this week, preparing for an interview of the last person who lived in the Reese-Peters House, before it was the Decorative Arts Center, caught up on several email messages that I wanted to follow-up on from the Columbus Writers Conference from last month, and the usual other job, chauffeur, dad, and handyman duties necessary to keep functioning around here.

There was a great series of interviews this week in Newsweek about the lessons that successful women have learned, and Martina Navratilova response really struck a chord with me about how a writer must approach the craft:

"Athletes just do not quit until they get it right, whether it is shooting free throws or practicing serves or practicing one particular shot. It is getting up when you don't feel like getting up for your training session, it is going to bed early even though you want to go out with your friends, it is only drinking half a beer when you really want to drink two. Everything it takes to get to your goal—that's the mentality of an athlete or a successful human being. Period.

I think we know when we are letting ourselves off the hook. If you look in the mirror and you really look yourself in the eye, the image you see forces you to be honest with yourself. As a result, you'll make the right choices."

To read the full interview (and the rest of the interviews), click here:

I often see parallels between athletics and writing. Both depend on hours and hours of practice and preparation before you see a hint of success. They both depend on making sacrifices to position themselves for a chance at success. Anyone who wants to write... who really wants to write... makes the hard choices to turn off the TV and miss the latest episode of The Office, lets the dishes sit in the sink (unwashed), passes up lunch with a group of co-workers, and gets the writing done. Not only on that one day, but tomorrow, the day after tomorrow, and so on.

Tomorrow, back to work on the proposal...

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