Wednesday, March 7, 2018

IWSG & Embracing My Turtle Side

Hello and Happy March, all! I sat out the February IWSG because I was finally making some progress on my writing and wanted to devote my time and energy to that, but unfortunately that sense of progress didn't even last through the whole month. Instead, I was hitting my head against more walls and once again wondering if I would ever finish another story.

When I wrote my first books everything seemed to come together so quickly that I was sure it would always be that way. That fit my personality, as patience has never been my strong suit. I tend to do everything quickly, so writing at a snail's pace has been frustrating to say the least.

Then I remembered that there is another thing I love doing that I don't do quickly. I started running last year for the first time in my life and was amazed how well I took to it and how it became something I looked forward to doing. Now I'm working on training again and hope to be able to run a 10k race by the end of the year.

Even though I love it, I don't have any delusions that I am a fast runner. I'm very comfortable as a turtle, and I know I'm not going to be the hare. I'm slow and that's totally okay with me. I'm not in competition with anyone but myself. It dawned on me that I should try looking at writing the same way.

There's no reason I have to try to finish a story quickly. I am not on any deadline and I don't have a contract I am obligated to fulfill. I can be a turtle writer just like I'm a turtle runner. I know some writers write several books a year and maybe I was trying to compete with that on some level, but I now realize that, just like with running, I'm not actually competing with anyone but myself when I write. I just want to enjoy what I'm doing and improve my skills.

So this is my new motto for both running and writing. I'm going to remember it next time I get frustrated and feel like hitting my head against those walls again.

Any other turtles out there? Either writers or runners?

This is my post for the March meeting of The Insecure Writer's Support Group. The group was founded by our Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh. To view list members and this month's co-hosts, visit the IWSG page here.