Monday, May 19, 2008

Winning a marathon

I heard on the radio that the winner of the women's division in the Colfax Marathon is 43 years old. And here I am, aiming only to finish--jog, walk, crawl--a 5k within the next few years.

Now since this is a blog about writing, I could insert a clever comment about how writing a novel is very much like finishing a marathon. But then, I'd have to figure out where publishing comes into this comparison. Do people who complete a marathon look for sponsors? Or do they go home with a sense of achievement as they tend to their tired muscles and aching bones?

And I'd have to address the fact that in a marathon, when you cross the finish line at that 26+ miles, you know, and everybody agrees, that you have completed the race, but in writing a novel, nobody, no even you, the author, really knows when the writing is completed.

And what about the people who cheer on the side in a race? Who are our cheerleaders? Critique groups? Contests? Other writers? (I wonder if runners in a race encourage one another during the race and share tips on how to run more efficiently.)

And then I'd have to point out that nobody in their right mind would wake up on race day and decide they'd run that marathon. They'd spend months and years conditioning their bodies and developing their stamina, run some 10Ks and half-marathons before they sign up for a race.

So I won't compare writing a novel to running a marathon.

You could, though. Tell me what you think.

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