Pink Think: “I don’t know what it is that I could have changed … I gave my heart and soul out there, and I put everything I could into this competition. Nastia deserved the gold.” – Olympic gold medalist Shawn Johnson, after teammate Nastia Liukin won the all-around gold, Dallas Morning News
“What if I get published before you do?” my husband asks me on our nightly dog-walk recently.
Drew is a veterinarian who has written a middle grade adventure story over the years for our children and is now seriously thinking of sending it off to agents.
I giggle, because he sounds so earnest. “Then it means my novel is taking too long to get published,” I tell him.
“No, really,” he insists. “I worry about that because I know how much you want to be published.”
“Well,” I say, “I will be happy for you, then I’ll want you to recommend me to your agent.”
We both laugh. But seriously. I do wonder about that in the back of my mind. Not just if my husband’s book gets published first. What if someone else in my writer’s group gets published first? A blogging friend?
My mom’s a published author, but she writes math textbooks.
I thought about this as I watched gymnasts and teammates Shawn Johnson and Nastia Liukin compete recently in the Olympics.
Both were very determined, amazing athletes. Nastia won the all-around gold, but Shawn won the balance beam gold. They smiled; they hugged each other, after their placings were announced. I am sure the second-place winner was putting on a brave face for the camera. Was that genuine happiness they felt for their teammate?
Teammates Shawn Johnson (right) and Nastia Liukin hug after Nastia wins the all-around gold. Photo credit: Universal Sports
Since I started writing novels in earnest two years ago, attending writer’s conferences, joining writer’s groups, and, more recently, blogging, I have made many friends in the writing community. I know many who are amazingly talented and who have worked hard in getting where they are right now.
Sometimes, I admit, I feel like I am in a contest to get a novel published. Only one person wins the gold. It’s either going to be me or someone else in the pack. I look around the room and wonder who’s going to get the bragging rights of, “I got there first.”
Ultimately though, it’s not just about winning first. It’s about posting our personal best, and I hope that we can all get published. If a friend or my husband makes it first, I hope that despite my disappointment that it wasn’t me, I will take inspiration from their win, learn from them, and keep running down the stretch to my own personal victory.