Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Running up hill


A few years ago, I heard a lady talking about how she runs up hills. She said that she always looks picks a tree or a bench, or anything at the top of the hill and focuses on that.

I remember hearing that piece of advice and thinking, I don’t do that at all. I look down at my feet and keep saying to myself “the ground is flat, the ground is flat”. I take one step at a time and don’t even look at the top until I’m within a couple of steps of it.

So what kind of writer are you? Do you constantly keep an eye on the end, the agent, the book deal. Or do you look down and take one step at a time, without thinking too much about the end product?

I’m definitely the later, but lately I’m been peeking at the top.

20 comments:

JKB said...

Those top peeks are important, but mostly I, like you, take the little steps. I think, Just one more, just one more, and before I know it I'm at the end.

Tabitha Bird said...

LOL- I look down at the ground too. I am a runner and I cannot focus too far ahead otherwise I start telling myself, "I will never make it. that is just too far." One thing I do is make a commitment at the bottom of the hill to run ALL the way to the top. I never say, "Oh, I'll see how I feel." Cause I know damn well how I will feel!

lotusgirl said...

I'm in the middle. I look up for a while and I look at my feet for a while.

Wendy @ All in a Day's Thought said...

I'm a runner so this post spoke to me. I fluctuate when I run. Same with the writing journey.
~ Wendy

Patti said...

Jen:It's amazing how a lot of little steps leads to the top.

Tabitha:I'm like you, I talk myself out of it.

Lois: I think you definitely need to see where your going.

Wendy: Balance is key.

Candice said...

I'm definitely a little steps girl. The top of the hill is just too overwhelming. For some people I know it's motivating, but I have to focus on putting one foot in front of the other. Then when I reach a summit (like finishing a book)it's sort of a pleasant surprise. :)

Carolyn V. said...

For me I think it depends on what I am writing and how far into the book I am. When I am trying to make it through the middle, I look at the end, but when I am starting I'm focusing on the one step at a time. =)

melane said...

I've never thought about it, but I guess I would be one to focus on the little steps. Just wanting the end result to get here is too frustrating, so I'm trying to enjoy the journey of getting there.

Patti said...

Candice: It always feels like an accomplishment when I get to the top, especially if I did it without stopping.

Caroyn: I think that's why I'm peeking at the top because I'm almost done.

Melane: Great attitude.

Tara McClendon said...

If I kept my focus on the top, I'd trip over my own feet. I think it's a combination of both--look up, check my footing, look up, check my footing. I get into a rythym that seems to work pretty well.

Paul said...

I kind of do both, both as a runner and a writer. As a runner I need to focus on one step at a time but when I'm doing a long run I visualize where I'm going, see myself topping the hill or running the last stretch of a marathon.

With writing I very much focus on the scene in front of me, the dialog, whatever is there, but I glance up and keep an eye on where I'm going. At least ideally that's what I strive for. I stumble and trip, sometimes fall down, but so far I've gotten up and kept going.

Susan R. Mills said...

I'd say that I'm a little of both.

Lisa and Laura said...

We tend to keep our noses to the grindstone most of the time. I think sometimes the view at the top can get distracting!

Patti said...

I agree, to keep looking at the top of hill may cause you to lose your footing and fall back down and have to start all over again.

Kristen Torres-Toro said...

I try to look at my feet, while glancing up every now and then. It helps to have both perspectives.

Katie Ganshert said...

Oh my goodness, what a good analogy! I laughed out loud with your "The ground is flat. The ground is flat." I'm definitely that kind of a runner!

AS a writer... I think I'm a little of both. I let myself dream and vision the top, but on a day-by-day basis, I tend to keep my eyes on my feet. One step at a time. One scene at a time. And hope I reach the top sometime before I'm too old to enjoy it. :)

Jessie Oliveros said...

If you look at the tree, it takes too long to get there. I think I look too much at the horizon, and now my shoelaces are untied so I have to stop.

Maybe that made no sense.

No, it did not.

Patti said...

Kristen: Perspective is everything.

Katie: Saying "the ground is flat" is my coping mechanism to work through the pain.

Jessie: I think if you look too much at the horizon, you become distracted and little animals come and undo your shoes. See it makes perfect sense.

Amber Lynae said...

I agree with some of the comments about perspective. But sometimes and for where I am at. Seeing where I am and just right in front of me is enough.

Love the analogy.

Jody Hedlund said...

I love this analogy, Patti! I think I'm definitely a look at my feet, grit my teeth, and do what I need to do. But even though I might have my head down, I still have the vision of where I'm going dancing through my head, spurring me forward!