I am a total sucker for the Olympics. It all started in 1984 when we moved to Colorado. Our new house lacked grass, and some of the homes around us weren’t even sold yet. Being 9 years old, and having no friends, I got sucked into watching the Olympics. If I could go back in time I’m sure I spent an unhealthy amount of time in front of the TV that summer, and now whenever I see an Olympic event I have to stop and stare.
Hello, Mary Lou Retton anyone? She was only a few years old than me! It was like seeing my friends winning gold medals, only none of my friends did gymnastics. But I did for a year after that summer. My proudest moments being the one time I did a forward roll and didn’t fall of the beam—no one was watching—and winning a hand stand contest. That was the pinnacle of my gymnastics career.
Even now, I’m sitting here typing between swimming heats. And I love it. There’s something about watching someone who has mastered a skill perform. Especially physical skills. I think I get drawn in because I’ve never been good a physical skills. Well, besides eating.
Anyway, onto writing. Think back to the last book that you stayed up late to read. You know, the one you didn’t want to put down—sneaking it on your phone during a meeting or when your spouse was talking about…something.
Right there is a writer’s Olympic gold medal—sitting in your hands. And they may never know that they made your day, or stretched your mind, or that the cover got cracked because you were gripping it so hard during the best parts. You, the reader, are the judge, and only you can give a book the gold. Writers don’t get very many awards, and we don’t have public displays of prowess (at least nothing anyone should talk about) so a kind word, a review on Goodreads or a like on Facebook may be the only way an author knows that anybody cares.
If you’re a writer, cherish people’s comments, and remember, you might be their hero. Either that or you wrote a character they’ve fallen in love with.