Choosing Inspiration Over Discouragement

Last week the USA Pro Challenge came through town--it's the Tour de France of Colorado. Locals line the streets with cow bells and noise makers for hours, all for a 30-second glimpse of the world's fastest bike riders.


It poured that day. The kind of rain that drowns out noise and makes it impossible to see. Still those riders charged through the streets and up the mountain to the finish line. It was thrilling! These athletes have dedicated their lives to a sport they love, hammering it out in the middle of lightning and thunder.


The coolest part? How many spectators rode their bikes to the event. Pete and I were among them. There was something about the energy of the race that made me want to get on my own two wheels and ride.

Why is it, then, that in the world of writing we look at the success of others and use it as a reason for discouragement?

So often, people who love to write ask me if it's worth doing if they don't pursue publication, or if they pursue publication but don't succeed.

Somewhere along the way we learned that if we want to write, we had better be serious about it. We had better be focused on some end goal. Yet if we love to bike, we don't expect ourselves to win (much less enter) races simply because the pros do. We get on our bikes and see where they take us. Maybe we race. Maybe we take a bike trip. Or maybe we just ride on Sundays.

It doesn't really matter so long as we enjoy it. Why not bring the same attitude to writing?