Tuesday, February 18, 2014

I Luge


Erin Hamlin
Writing is like the luge. You know, that insane Olympic sport where a single person gets on a tiny sled made of fiberglass and steel and hurls themselves feet first down an icy track at speeds around 80-90 miles an hour with nothing between them and the cutting ice but a colorful spandex suit.

Yeah, that luge...

By the way, I realize there are also two-person luges and writing teams, but for today's discussion we're talking singles. Because that's what writing primarily is, an insane endeavor by a single individual.

Like the luger, I have a support team made up of my friends and family, my agent (coach) and all the people at my publisher (sponsors). Then there are my readers aka fans cheering me on from the stands. All hoping I don't wipe out before I get to the finish line of completing the next book.  But in the end, whether it's me or an Olympic luger, we're the ones alone on the sled controlling the run and hoping we don't crash.

See, writing is like the luge. Except that I perform sitting at a desk, usually in comfy clothing with my cats nearby. Oh, and if done right, writing shouldn't have the added risk of broken bones or injury.

An Olympic luge run is about 60 seconds long.  It obviously takes much longer than that to complete a book, but when deadlines are breathing down your neck, it can feel like the stop watch is running in thousands of a second increments.

A few days ago Erin Hamlin, a 27 year old woman from New York, took home the first ever Olympic individual luge medal for the U.S. It was bronze and in a sport based on speed the difference between Hamlin's time and that of the gold medal winner was about 1.5 seconds.

1.5 seconds ...

I have around 45 days before my next deadline.  In luge time, that's the blink of a frosty eye. The current WIP is going slow, too slow for me to be in medal contention, but like the last place luger, I will finish.

1 comment:

Mark Baker said...

I've got this great new idea for a TV show. Writers pitch their books while luging. Do you think it will take off?

And now for the cheering fan part of the comment. I have no doubt you'll finish your current WIP and it will be another great book.