Today is Half-Way-Day in WriMo land.
Translation: By the end of the day, the novel draft should be 25,000 words or more.
I've hit a rocky writing stretch, mostly just because I've been letting life win a little. Somehow having a family of 7 down with an ugly stomach virus will just manage to derail you a bit. Add in other actual life stuff and you suddenly think, what book? I was doing something else?
I told you all this yesterday so it isn't news.
What is news is that I did find my way back.
I talked to my friends, my regular friends, my writer friends and so on. I read some Pep Talks(see NaNoWriMo) and some quasi-self-help books.
Here's what I learned.
There are simply two kinds of people on this Earth. You know this. Some do, some don't.
That's all there is. It really is that stupid simple.
The people that make art or finish marathons or do the things that leave us in awe aren't magical. They aren't in possession of something amazing.
Yes, there are people that are super gifted and have a great talent, but think about it, just for a second, think about it.
They work at it. They practice it. They strive. They fail. They try again.
Those people are amazing because they simply don't quit.
It's true. That's all they do different.
When it gets hard, they keep going. When they don't want to anymore, they go again. When the circumstance of life piles up on them, they say ok, that's happening and then find a way to keep working.
Whatever is their thing, writing, running, music, business, whatever, it is an integral part of their make up, of who they are. They do it with passion, with routine, with the knowledge of the experience that doing it today when it's hard and unpleasant and seemingly hopeless will pay off in the tomorrows yet to come, or at least in the hope of those tomorrows.
It would be cool to be an overnight sensation, but it's not real. Lot's and lot's of working nights came before the single overnight they became a known sensation. And news flash, they were a sensation before that too, and they remain so after. It's us who are fickle about fame, and is fame a measure?
When it's really "your thing" the two F's ( fortune and fame) aren't the motivators.
When it's your thing, you work at it, sometimes to the point that you forget that you began with this thing because it was a part of your joy in life. It was something that delighted you, something that soothed you, something that keeps your brain from stagnating.
Your measure is not your novel on the best seller list, your CD top of the charts, or your painting hanging in the Louvre. Not that these wouldn't be fantastic and aren't good goals, they are.
Your measure is did you quit.