Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Olympic Drive

I am sure other, more witty, better looking, and smarter people have made similiar parallels between Olympic athletes and writers. 

But those people are busy right now, so you're stuck with me. :D Sorry about that.

Anyway. My family and I were talking yesterday about what it takes to be an Olympic athlete, namely the sacrifices.

Consider how many hours of practice it requires. How many missed outings with friends and family. The amount of money spent it takes for them to even be considered for the team.

N0, seriously, think about this.

Because there's a lot of decent athletes out there. Talented athletes, who might have had the chops to go for the gold, but instead made different choices. There's nothing wrong with those choices, but it takes a certain amount of sacrifice to keep working at something day after day.


These athletes going to the Olympics aren't guaranteed anything. They aren't guaranteed they're going to make the team, or place, or place high enough to win the gold medal. They do all of that work, on the hope they might win a gold medal (or settle for the silver or bronze, if you can call that settling).

So why bother?

I'm not an Olympic athlete, so I don't know what drives them. I watched one of the road races, as they cycled in the rain (SHOCKING in London, right?) for three and a half hours. I just kept thinking, "No way. No way. I would have stopped after the first half hour."

Because that's not my passion. Writing is. 

Writing is the thing I can do, day in and day out. When I'm tired and the words won't come, and when I am typing lightening fast in a white hot fire, word-drunk. Why? Because it's my passion. It's the thing that gives me release and challenges and makes me feel alive. 

And even though like an Olympic athlete I have no guarantees of an agent, a book deal, of selling to more than just my mom, it's going to keep me going.

Plus, the cool thing about writing is you can do as much practicing as you want by yourself. Because seriously, the first time I fell off a balance beam I would just die from embarrassment.      

1 comment:

  1. That's a helluva point. There are a lot of shady coaches out there, and they like to talk about the olympics to light a fire under their students (and keep the checks coming). But really, you have to want it more than everything else in the world.

    And a lot of athletes talk about the passion that they have for their sport.

    I'd suggest the writer's olympics, but how would we hand out medals?