Thursday, April 25, 2013

NO-JUDGMENT ZONES

Blog, what blog?

I stop blogging at times, not because I'm so busy (is anyone's BS detector going off? I guess I'm just saying that being busy isn't an excuse--I know some of you Do It All), but because I'm Feeling Something. And I don't like to explore Feelings in a public place. I need to be calm when I put it out there. :)

Even so, I still get pretty worked up when I think about Marathon Monday. The Boston Marathon is a hallowed race course for me--we walk from our house to the halfway mark to hand out oranges most years, and before I had kids, I cheered at Heartbreak Hill when I wasn't jumping in to run the last two miles alongside my brother. (You know, who Qualified--see all my sisterly pride?)

I don't run those kinds of distances--ever--but when I watched the events unfolding, I said to my sister-in-law, "next year, maybe I'll run it." Ignore that the qualifying time is pretty quick. Ignore that the farthest I've ever run at one time was 17 miles.

My sister-in-law laughed and told me that the one thing she could count on New Englanders for was a fine-tuned Eff-You attitude. :)

Which, in the moment, made me happy. I'd run the marathon to show my solidarity with the people who had their amazing celebration of the day, and SO MUCH MORE, stolen from them. But now, I'm wondering if decisions I make in a knee-jerk, you-can't-stop-me fashion ever make sense.

So I think of writing and querying and book reviews. When we as writers start to get bitter, when we start making decisions based on the things that make us mad--whether it's a rejection, or a bad review, or an uncomfortable crit, then we start to wander into the Land of Eff-Yous.

I'm not preaching here--we've all done this, and you know this blog is a NO-JUDGMENT Zone. My hope is that we go off the rails privately, that we deal with our visit to the land to get us through and then come out the other side, but I've seen that bad tweet, that unfortunate blog post, that manuscript which is suddenly an e-book, because the author has landed in the land of Eff-Yous.

And can't find their way out.

I'd rather live in the NO-JUDGMENT Zone. Where people not only forgive our transgressions, BUT HELP US OUT WHEN WE ARE ABOUT TO MAKE ONE.

And, I know we are all busy, and I know we don't even have time for the important things in our own lives, but if we really took a moment to see what someone else needed, or to see that someone was hanging by a thread, just surviving, wouldn't there be less feelings of rejection and hurt and EFF-Yous in this world?

Okay, now I'm totally preaching. I should get off my soap box and lace up the running shoes if I'm going to be ready to run 26.2 miles come next April. :)  

I hope you are all not living in the Land of Eff-Yous, but in that NO-JUDGMENT Zone. I hope you are whole and well and that I will see you next week in the Land of SCBWI.

And if you do find yourself stuck in the EFF-You Land, please let me know, I might be able to help. :)

6 comments:

  1. Heather, if you can run 17 miles, you can do 26.2! I'm going to try to run Boston next year--maybe you will too (no pressure). See you at SCBWI (or at TWL if I can find the time). :-)

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  2. That's awfully optimistic. :) You didn't see me after the 17 miles. :) TWL will be open, whether I'm there or not, around 8:30-3ish each day. I hope you do get a chance to stop by!

    See you at SCBWI!

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  3. Oh I just <3 you so much for this post. And GO you, Heather!! You can run 26.2!!

    Haha, easy for me to say, as I sit over here, with zero intention of running so much as a mile. but I will be cheering for you!!! And want you to make sure you blog all about it come next April!

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  4. Marisa--I've been missing you!! I'll have to stop by TPR soon! I'm sure I'll mention it on the blog if I do the marathon. :) Thanks so much for stopping by!

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  5. Ah, if only every day could be judgement-free. Oh wait. I guess it could be...

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  6. Not sure I could run a marathon either. I get bored running that long. :) I'm impressed with 17 miles - that's great.
    It's so easy to wander off into that zone of bitterness. This industry isn't easy and we have to constantly be on the look out for staying out of it!

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