Monday, November 8, 2010

Cheering From the Sidelines


My heart and head pound in syncopation with my feet on the pavement. My lungs won't inflate completely, my muscles are exhausted, and I'm beginning to think I started at too fast a pace. I can't keep up and I'm spent. I'm only 80% of the way through a race and I contemplate picking a side street, ripping off my race number, and pretending I never started. Or maybe walking just a few steps, since no one is around to know.

Then I round a bend and find a small cache of spectators who, although I'm a total stranger and the only one around, cheer exuberantly. They offer a smile, encouragement, energy to bridge me over until I reach the finish line staging area where plenty of eyes will be on me, expecting me to give my all. Of course I wouldn't give up the family and friends who send me off and welcome me back at the start and finish lines, but it that small group, randomly placed, also make a difference in my race. And they probably have no idea how important they are.

My writing journey seems to be quite similar. I have so appreciated those who continue to cheer for me as I refine, rewrite and submit my novel. There have been many friends and family who've done that and more for me, but it's also those random strangers who probably don't realize they have so much influence, my on-line writer friends. And now I want to do the same for them.

Although I signed up for NaNoWriMo this year for the first time, I have yet to write a word for it. I've written plenty of words in the past week, and eliminated even more, but none on the new novel I was supposed to be writing in a month. So this year, I watch NaNo from the sidelines and cheer on my AI friends! Keep it up! You can do it!