Monday, December 28, 2009

After The Two Minute Warning

by Sandra Elzie

Okay, so the year is winding down, only a few days more to be able to write 2009 on your checks...assuming you have any money left to spend (g)

Since everyone looks at things differently, I'll ask the following questions.

Are you excited about the new year, a new starting line or are you lamenting the passing of yet another year without achieving what you promised yourself you'd do this year? Should you make new goals when you didn't even accomplish the old ones? Do you tend to look back more than you look forward?

Although I think it's good to learn the lessons of the past, never totally forgetting them lest we have to repeat them later on down the road, but I can tell you from a sports person's point of view, if you waste time and energy looking over your shoulder, it's not only a wast of time and energy, but someone behind you just might use that lapse in your focus to pass you by.

Forget what lies behind and press on toward the goal. Do your best and don't worry about yesterday. Each day can be a new beginning. If you missed your goal of writing 500 words yesterday, forget it! Write 500 today and move on!

So, with this in mind, we have four more days until the new year. Will you waste them...lamenting about other wasted days, or will you use these next four days to kick-start your new goals? In the words of many famous coaches and motivators, “ Get off the sidelines and get in the game!”

This coming year is full of opportunities for you to get your work in front of others. Besides your critique partner or group there are contests and a wide variety of agents and editors just waiting to see what this next year will bring their way.
Take a moment to think about this subject from their point of view. They just might be making a resolution to find the next great novel to break out, but I can guarantee that it won't be yours if you don't get your work in that agent or editor's hands.

Well, team, we're down one touchdown and we're at the two-minute warning. What are we going to do? Get in the game and execute one last fantastic effort or wimp out and allow others to carry our trophy home without a fight?

We can't control all the players...we can't control whether or not we make the goal, but we can control our own individual effort. The difference between a winner and a loser is that the winner gets up one more time after being knocked down.

The final score reflects your effort.


Marilyn Baron said...

Great post. I am definitely looking forward to the new year and the new decade (that's hard to believe). I don't want to look back because I'm focused on the future. I entered a contest last week and I will be focusing on sending out my current manuscript and starting a new one.


Sandy Elzie said...

Yeah for you, Marilyn!

If you or anyone wants a list of contests, I have a website that lists tons of them. In the meantime, happy writing and I'm glad you're looking toward the future.


Ana Aragón said...

Hi, Sandy,

I'm not one to look back...but I do remember!

My personal goal is to double up efforts to finish this master's degree by October 2010, two quarters early. I will continue to write and submit, but my goal is to rewrite/edit Strike Three and finish the rough draft of my romantic suspense.

More importantly, is to continue with our small group at church and work on the Reach team to bring in more people to my absolutely fantastic new church.

Happy New Year!


Susan May said...

I have plans to work harder. I'm closer than I ever was to what I want and I'm determined to do whatever has to be done to reach my goals. If I don't reach them, it want be because I didn't try. Great post Sandy.

Sandy Elzie said...

Wow, your master's two quarters early? What a goal! I'll be cheering for you when that day comes.


You're right about being closer than ever to your goal...every day that we write at least a few words, or edit a page of our WIP, we're closer to our goal. Some days maybe it's baby steps closer and others it's giant steps (remember that child's game?) but every step in the right direction is noteworthy.

Hang in there ladies, I know you'll get there!


Carol Burnside said...

Like Susan, I feel like I'm closer to my goal than I was this time last year. I'm looking forward to 2010 and new goals. :)

Sandy Elzie said...

Hi Carol,

Do you have know up there? My daughter in D.C. had 18 inches of the stuff.

Glad you dropped by.

I'm with you guys, I'm looking forward. My granddaughter's swim coach tells them to "POWER THROUGH to the finish". That's what each of us need to coasting in, we need to keep stroking until we reach the goal.


Cyrano said...

Great motivational post Sandy!
Hey and great job in sending out that contest entry Marilyn! I'm rooting for ya.
I hope everyone reaches their goals for the new year.
Good luck all,
Happy 2010,

Sandy Elzie said...

Hi Tamara,

Get those goals've only got a few days left!!!


Jason said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Carol Burnside said...

Yes, ma'am. We got about 18" of the white stuff as well. It's mostly all gone because we got rain several days later, but definitely had a white Cmas.

Maxine Davis said...


I enjoyed the post. I will "power through" the end of the year and into the next!

Proud of what I accomplished this year in writing. Will definitely do more in 2010.

You are an inspiration on writing!

Dianna Love said...

Sandy -
Love the way you encourage everyone to charge forward into the new year with plans to slam our goals. I so agree with the write 500 words tomorrow if you missed it today and think of goals like a diet. You can't gain it all in one day, so if you miss a day of eating right you just continue on and go back to your plan tomorrow.

All the posts and goals are inspiring.

Cinthia Hamer said...

I,too, am looking forward to the new year. Lots of exciting things going on, and now that I seemed to have conquered (or at least partially subdued)some health issues, I'm anticipating a great writing year.

Good luck to all and here's hoping we can all achieve our goals for 2010.

Nancy said...

Hi, Sandy--

An interesting post. I've done a lot of writing over the holidays, which has let me feel as if I'm going on of the old year and into the new with momentum. I start teaching again in a week and a half, so my goal is to not let that slow me overly much, though it certainly will take time.

Congrats on a great launch year and all the best in 2010 to all the petit fours and hot tamales group!