Run at your own pace

It's the total opposite of a sprint
It’s the total opposite of a sprint

For the past couple of days here at stately Maximum Z HQ, yours truly has been doing everything possible to fight off a nasty viral infection (Note to self – invest heavily in Kleenex and Halls cough drops) because I’m doing my first half-marathon in over a year this weekend. I do expect to be well enough to run. Fingers firmly crossed hoping to at least break the 2-hour mark.

As a result of being sick, I’ve been home from work the past couple of days, which means a little more time than usual to work on the western rewrite. Latest update: page 38.

When I have a lot of time to write, I’ll give myself a short break after reaching a milestone, such as the end of a scene, or x number of pages written or after a certain amount of time (this also helps prevent premature burnout). Sometimes break-time involves perusing social media or screenwriting forums, just to see what’s going on out there.

What’s been going on this week has been a flurry of activity among my peers. One got a manager. Another finished their latest draft. Another had an agency request their script after a pitch.

And there’s me, filling a wastebasket with snotty tissues, coughing up things of a color not found in nature, and hoping to get to the bottom of the next page before the day is done. Slightly disheartening, to say the least.

But, like when I run a race, I remember that it’s different for everybody. I’ve been working on this rewrite for quite a while, and have confidence that it’ll be done sooner than I think.

I’m also overseeing all of the “Ask a…!” interviews, and have now added this into the mix.

Oh yeah, and training runs.

When you finish a race, you get a medal, and you wear it with pride. You’ve earned it. You finished an hour behind the winner? Big deal. Chances are you didn’t do it to win. You did it to test yourself, to see how you could do with this self-imposed challenge.

When you write a script, yes, you are going up against every other writer out there, but you do it the way that works best for you. You can only manage 30 minutes a day? That’s fine. You tell yourself you’re going to write at least 3 pages a day, and you actually do? Fantastic.

Will others get done before you, or accomplish things faster than you? Of course, but that’s nothing for you to worry about. Focus on you, not them.

I think it’s absolutely phenomenal that these other writers have each reached a certain point with their writing and careers. And so will I. Maybe not as fast, but it’ll happen.

Just gotta keep working at it.

See you at the finish line.

2 thoughts on “Run at your own pace

  1. My first marathon I made it in 6 hours. OMG, I could have walked it quicker!!! I struggled, but made it on through. By the third marathon, I’d gotten the hang of it — still, not top 100 contender — but personal bests for myself nonetheless and eventually unbelievable joy in what I had accomplished! My creative career is the same — I’n the beginning I struggled accepting the truth, that I was not an executive and instead a performer — I knew it, but couldn’t fathom leaving all the money, the power behind to pursue the truth, to begin again. To feel so behind everyone else… and now, I’m in my groove. I’m on that high — I’m still trudging along as an artist, but I’m feeling that unbelievable joy nonetheless!

    Oh, and yeah, I’m the Kleenex queen for the past two weeks. Sniffling all along the way — but still still doing what I can — even just 30 minutes here and there. Nothing will stop me now.

    Thanks for validating me this morning. For running at my own pace — so good to hear!

    Get well soon my friend.

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