Those of you who know me well, know about the Gourley family and sports. Gourleys play sports, live sports, coach sports and support all the sports they don’t play or coach. Athletics are great family activities though as often or not we’re miles apart on different fields supporting one family member or another and updating each other by cell phone.
This time of year is often a lull between seasons unless one of our teams makes the playoffs. My daughter’s field hockey team almost always makes the post season. This week they’re defending their state title from last year. It should be exciting.
Being a writer I can’t help but make comparisons between sports and a career as an author. It takes lots of practice to be good at them. You improve quicker if you have experts and those with more experience giving you direction. The encouragement of your colleagues and support persons helps you keep going when you get discouraged. You can’t succeed if you don’t try your best all the time.
Sometimes you’re so tired from the other demands in your life you want to slack on your commitment but you have to find the will to keep going. You have to take risks and be daring. You have to take criticism and use it to help you improve. There are some rules you must follow but there’s also room to show off your own talent and style. There will be painful failures and joyful successes. Sometimes you will be the best player but you won’t necessarily win. Occasionally you may not think it was fair or you’ll get a bad piece of luck. At the end of the day the best team or writer doesn’t always win.
But the successful athlete or writer only goes that much harder when the going gets tough. Don’t give up the dream. Work harder. Turn the frustration and tears into determination and sweat. The time will come when you’re the expert, coaching the inexperienced and finding more pride and joy in their growth. So keep working and give back when you’ve ‘made’ it.
What are some ways you help other writers? Do you have family or writing friends who provide support for you?