Monday, February 22, 2010

Under Pressure

I absolutely love the Olympics! Winter or Summer--it doesn't matter. There is something magical about the games for me. Here are people who've devoted themselves to a particular sport--they've made sacrifices in order to compete with the best in the world.

Such great stories come from these games. Tragedy and triumph. People who, for a moment, have the attention of the whole world. Sometimes they excel and succeed--and sometimes they don't.

I've competed at things my whole life. Tee ball, softball, basketball, cheerleading, and the list goes on. I know how it feels to be victorious. And I know how it feels to be the last batter--the one who could keep the game going--and the one who strikes out.

As I've gotten older, I've learned that sometimes my biggest competition is in the form of my own negative thoughts. As a writer, self-doubt creeps in all the time. Sometimes I sit and dwell more on one bad review than I do on ten great ones. Maybe we want to believe the worst about ourselves, I don't know.

In the Olympics, we see athletes who face harsh critics--sometimes it's from the media. Sometimes it's from a fellow competitor. Sometimes it comes from an entire country.

And yet, they go out there and do their thing. Some of them crack under pressure. They have one shot and they blow it. I hate watching it because I know we've just observed something that will haunt them forever. A fall on the ice. A missed goal. A ski jump gone awry.

But I love seeing their faces when they know they did it. When they stick the landing. Or land the triple axle. Or make the goal. They've silenced their critics. And proved to themselves that what seemed impossible is possible.

I'm under my own kind of pressure this week as I try to finish up a book that's due in March. And it would be easy to break under the pressure. Honestly, there are moments when I want to throw my computer out the window and run away. :) But I'm not going to do that. Because sometimes your dreams really do turn into reality. Just ask Evan Lysecek, Lindsey Vonn, Shaun White or Apolo Ohno.

The song of the day is Chariots of Fire...

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Love, Actually

So, it's Valentine's Day. Hmm. I'm not exactly a fan. And it has nothing to do with the fact that I still check the "single" box. I feel about V-Day the same way I feel about New Year's Eve. It's one of those holidays that seems forced.

Can this be true? Is it right for someone who writes romance novels to not be a fan of Valentine's Day? :) Well, let me make a confession...I didn't set out to write romance novels. It just sort of happened. Somewhere along the way, I started to realize...every story is a love story. Sure, they might be disguised as suspense. Or mystery. Or fantasy. But more often than not, there is a love element in there. Sometimes it isn't romantic love. But love, nevertheless. Which is how I came to write about love. Because that seems to be the central theme in our lives when you strip everything else away.

So that gets me to thinking about L-O-V-E. So many different kinds of love. Such a tiny little word with so many different meanings...

I love God. And my family. And my dogs. And my new Prada purse. I love sleeping in. And my friends. And Peppermint Mochas from Starbucks. I love clean sheets. And my DVR. And when I write "the end" and hit send. I love college football. And hot summer days. And being snowed in.

And I don't love any of those things in exactly the same way.

So, even though I'm single--and from what I'm seeing on Facebook and Twitter, single people are supposed to resent being reminded of love today--well I don't! Love is wonderful. Love is powerful. I may not have romantic love in my life right now (anyone know any nice, normal, single guys? haha!) but I have lots of love in my life. And, as any good romance heroine, I have the hope that true love is right around the corner.

So no matter what box you check today, I hope you have a wonderful Valentine's Day, celebrating the love that is in your life!

Song of the day...The Power of Love by Huey Lewis--I thought it was fitting!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Roller Coaster

No wonder I always feel like I'm on a roller coaster! I just found out that Love Roller Coaster was the #1 song when I was born. So it's the song of the day. :)

Last year in honor of my birthday, I made a list of 33 things about me that most people don't know. This year, I'm going to stick to 10.

Here are 10 more things that make me "me"...

1. I'm left handed. I think this helps with the creativity. It doesn't help in handwriting, peeling potatoes or using scissors.

2. I have an aversion to feet. Except for cute baby feet.

3. If I could only eat one meal forever, it would be chicken fingers with honey mustard sauce.

4. Someday I want to take a road trip across America. Just some good music and the open road--sounds about perfect.

5. I'm still sometimes surprised when I see my name on the cover of a book. Seems like a dream.

6. I have a really good memory. As in, there is a chance I could tell you what happened on a given day in a given year--what I wore, where I went, who was there, etc. It drives my friends crazy. I can also still remember my high school cheerleading routines and every Makin' Music performance I was ever in from college.

7. I still believe the best is yet to come.

8. I know this will make me sound old fashioned--but sometimes I miss the way things used to be. Simpler. Slower. Technology and innovation are both good things, but I miss Mayberry.

9. That being said, I still love my DVR.

10. Last one! Hmm. Okay. If I could, I would stay up all night and sleep all day.

If you were reading this blog last year, you know that I dreaded turning 33. Well, I have to say that I actually had a wonderful year. My first 2 books releasing, several fun trips and a gigantic leap of faith when I stopped working full time to write. 33 ended up being the best yet. I'm hopeful that 34 will be even better!


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