Day 6: Tell us about a time when you surprised yourself.

Let me tell you a quick story. A year ago I was not a runner. Well, just barely. I had just completed my first ever 5k! And that was a lot of distance for me.

See, I have never been a super active person. I’ve just relied on a good metabolism to keep me “in shape”. Then, one day in 2013 I felt a shift. Suddenly, for some inexplicable reason, I knew that if I didn’t get up and do something about it, I was going to die in the zombie apocalypse.

So slowly, in fits and starts, I began to run. At first it was frustrating and hard to do. But I rallied my running buddies around me and with their support I started training for my first 5k. Then for my first 12k, and then for my first half-marathon (running next week!!).

If I had hopped off the couch and tried to run 13 miles, I never would have succeeded. The zombies would have eaten me or I would have died of a heart attack or an aggressive case of the shin splints. But by knowing my overall goal, to get active, and giving myself milestone goals along the way, I’m now able to easily (if slowly) run 12 miles! Who would have thought?

The same thing applies to your writing life. You can’t just jump off the couch and write a novel… well, not a good one, anyway. It takes training, commitment, and support. Carve out time, just a little at first, then more and more as you get practiced letting the words flow through your fingers onto the keyboard. Find writing buddies to support you, to cheer you on, to push you from behind when you’re exhausted an about to break.

When you look back a year from now, will you be surprised, like I was, at how far you have come?