The work you do today for tomorrow
I was running yesterday. It’s been hard lately because suddenly, my legs aren’t fans of a longer run. It starts in my calves, which hurt, and then my hamstrings, which tighten enough to be useful to a member of the Wallenda family. I ran on the Dunedin Causeway yesterday, which was nice. But it’s warmer now. And I just never fell into a rhythm.
Still I ran for an hour and a half. I have to because I plan to run Tough Mudder twice through this fall. Yesterday was awful, but it’s required if I want to meet my goals. So I kept up yesterday, even though I didn’t want to.
This is the part where you talk about how exercise is a metaphor for writing. I have money on it.
The running I did yesterday wasn’t for yesterday. It was for the first weekend in November. And the running I’ll do later this week won’t be for later this week, it’ll be for the first weekend in November. That’s enough to get me through it for the day.
It’s the same when you’re writing and it doesn’t flow. For me, writing has always been an exercise for that day. But it’s not. It’s for the day when your current work in progress is done. It’s for the day when you can sit down in front of an agent or publisher and say, with confidence, that your work is the best you can possibly create. It’s for the day when you decide to self-publish and someone who isn’t related to you buys a copy. It’s for the day that first positive review appears on Amazon.
When a run doesn’t fall into place, it’s a long, agonizing experience. Yesterday, after an hour and a half, I finally gave up on running and walked most of the last mile back to the car. But I ran a long way. I didn’t cheat myself.
It’s a small building block toward a future day of excitement.