Are there any real losers?

For those of you keeping track of Ali and John’s competition, I know you’re with me when I say:

Those two have done some work.

Word Count Math: Both have done about 80 or so pages in less than two weeks. That’s an amazing blast of words for those of us who are not Stephen King. And probably even for him.

While I know that some (read: Ali and John) would claim there is a definitive loser somewhere in the mix, I know they both kicked my ass for this month…and the next couple month probably!

Ali’s thesis is well on its way. John’s novel has taken off.

Nah, no losers.

Competition: Is It Right For You?

Iron John has proclaimed that competition is not for the weak, and I tend to agree with his argument.

I also say that competition, healthy and vital competition, is necessary for development as a writer. In my college classes there was a certain ‘squaring up’–‘partnering’–‘creation of nemeses’ amongst the classmates. In essence, one would pick out another writer in the workshop and basically try to ape them. We’d pick people who had similar writing styles/themes/issues as our own and try to bounce off them. If they had something we wanted, they were a nemesis. Our rival. Once we gained (or thought we gained an inkling) what they were accomplishing, we moved on and selected others.

It’s a growth process. But, you have to be willing to have your ass handed to you.

True for all competitions. Sure…you could win. But you could also get kicked to the ground and humiliated. Fear of humiliation=motivator. Anticipation of kicking ass=motivator. Whatever motivates you to get stuff written down, well, I say it’s a good thing.

So…should John and Ali decide to have a ‘my page stack is bigger than yours’ kind of competition…I say right on. Just remember, we will cheer the winner and throw pickles at the loser. I also say that the count should be words-not pages-because that’s a clearer indicator of quantity. Messing around with fonts won’t help you in that case.

My Very Own Reading Challenge

Looking over at my lists on the side there, I see that my reading has been skimpy compared to previous years. So my challenge for the next week or so is to read three books.

Presently, I am reading My Sister, My Love by Joyce Carol Oates.

I am now accepting application/recommendations for the next two books. If you name it, I probably have it…but just to be safe, name three or four each….;)

Sound off.

Never Get Cocky

That’s the message that I received in the mail today.

First: Free copies of Shimmer magazine…the issue in which I was published! Yippee! I’m the best writer ever!

Second: Rejection letter right below it. “Sorry, it’s not right for us” yadda yadda yadda.

You just gotta take the bad with the good, ya know?