Monday, April 26, 2010

Maybe

Dude, you guys, I just went to a fabu conference (thanks SO MUCH for the laughter. It helped so much!).

One of the conference coordinators made this wicked awesome slide show that made all these goosebumps rise up on my arms, and super-embarrassing tears to prick my eyes. I mean, who cries at a powerpoint presentation? Srsly.

I asked for the whole slide show, because it was just that awesome. I'm waiting to hear back and/or just provide a link to it if I have to.

But this video was in it. I know, I know. I'm not a huge fan of videos either, but this one is only a minute long and it's the best thing ever.




What do you think? I know it's a basketball commercial, but the concept is the same for writing. How many times have we read wicked-amazing books and just thought their authors pumped that out overnight? Or became legends without any hard work? Without any rejection, heartbreak, or tears? Without any despair?

Do we think that every book starts in the bookstore and not with sleepless nights and sore fingers, demoralizing critiques and a whole lotta freaking hard work?

What will it take to become a legendary author? And are you up to the challenge?

I am.

90 comments:

Jess of All Trades said...

Wicked Awesome. I needed that first thing this morning.

Cheree said...

I am so up for the challenge. There has to be some pain of rejection and hard, gruelling work to make that climb to the top even sweeter.

Liza said...

This is so timely. Deep breath. OK, back to it. Thanks!

Brenda said...

I LOVED THAT!!! Thank you for that and so glad that your conference went well!

Jonathon Arntson said...

Well put, MJ. Thanks Elana, I am glad to hear the conference went well. I know your jitters last week were for nothing :)

MissV said...

that was a cool commercial.

Oh, and by the way, there's no shame in tearing up at a PowerPoint. DISNEY movies make me cry. (now you know) Well, pretty much anything can make me tear up. Ask my 14 year old. She's highly embarrassed by this.

Crystal Cook said...

I knew you would be awesome :):)

And, heck YES I am!!!

thanks for the uplift.

Candyland said...

Sure am:) Cool video.

Sheri Larsenッ said...

You know, Elana, the whole time I was watching that video I had only one thought: when and where did we writers come up with the deadening, heart-stopping idea that this wasn't going to be hard?? I think on a conscious level we recognize the work it takes to succeed, but for some reason when our subconscious gets involved all that logical hits the fan.

I see a surgeon and know if I'd have aspired to that profession it would have taken countless hours to succeed at. Or a teacher in a school and all the life issues they have to deal with for their students, not just reading and writing.

Writers really need to give themselves a break and take each day as it comes, setting a small goal for that day. It really is about the journey. Some of the most successful writers have had amazing journeys...before stardom.

Summer said...

I cry at powerpoint presentations, too. And pretty much everything else under the sun.

Great video. I could have a reminder three times a day and it still not be enough sometimes, you know?

Glad the conference went well!

laurapauling said...

I'm totally up for it. And yes, sometimes we forget how hard the great ones have worked!

Amie B said...

perfect. thanks. and sheri's words were dead on too. it was enough to make me weepy this morning.

Theresa Milstein said...

I'll have to wait to watch this for when I'm done subbing. But as far as crying, I find conferences to be very emotional. Susan Cooper, Katherine Patterson, Laurie Halse Anderson, and Cynthia Lord are some of the keynote speakers who have made me cry. But even certain workshops have made me eyes well up.

I'm glad it went well and you had a good time.

Matthew Rush said...

Great point Elana.

Jaydee Morgan said...

Loved this commercial. Although I already knew it was hard work, it's a great reminder of what we must put in to it everyday if we want to succeed. I'm definitely up for the challenge.

Kelly said...

Awesome commercial. Love Michael Jordan!!!
And yes. I am up for it. Bring it on!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

JustineDell said...

Whoa...that commercial is so true. Even when put in the writing context. That you so much for sharing. And yes, I'm up for it!!

~JD

Heather Kelly said...

How did you know I needed this today--specifically, right at this moment in time, when I face yet another long revision on my novel? When I stare down the question of--how could I possibly be a gifted writer if I need to revise THIS MUCH to get achieve a workable book? So, thanks. Because I am up for this. Sometimes I just need a kick in the pants!

Lindsay (a.k.a Isabella) said...

Great video and so true. Especially now I'm revising again. No more excuses, time to work harder.

Yay, glad the conference went well:)

Kristi Helvig said...

Wow - amazing video! I'm so glad the conference was great for you - I went to my 1st big one this weekend and had the best time ever. We had the most inspiring keynote speaker and I walked out of there feeling more than ready for the challenge! :)

Christina Lee said...

Holy crap. Maybe I'm just emotional today but I just teared up! Glad the conference went well for you, girl!

Portia said...

Wow, thanks for the Monday morning inspiration! I really needed it today :-)

Tina Laurel Lee said...

Yep. You keep it so real and tell us what we need to hear!

Bish Denham said...

Great video (but it's a Nike commercial not a baseball commercial. I know, picky, picky, picky....) Anyway, it's kind of like kids/people who think milk comes in those plastic jugs or that eggs come in those styro cartons. They don't have a clue as to where the stuff really came from, the work it took to get to the grocery store shelf. Books on the shelf at the book store /library? Same deal.

Danyelle said...

And you will be. :) You're awesome, Elana!

Amy Jo Lavin said...

Great video! Thanks for sharing.

Nisa said...

Pretty inspiring! I agree with Danyelle. You will be! :)

Melissa Sarno said...

That's exactly what I needed to see on a rainy Monday morning. Thanks for posting :-)

Kerri C at CK Farm said...

You mean they really don't write those fab books overnight, lol! I love a good challenge :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Awesome - Jordan said it all!

Lisa said...

Hell yes I'm up for it! Woot! Awesome video ;)

B. Miller said...

Elana - I needed this today! Was reminding myself of it somewhat in my own blog post this morning, and to see it here just reaffirms my believe that coincidences do not exist.

Thanks for posting this!!

Little Ms J said...

Holy crap. I got goosebumps at the end.

Jen said...

I'm so glad the laughter worked! I was laughing with you!!!

Excellent video!

I used to think that a book was written in a day and naturally a publisher stood at your door step and did all the work for you. Yup I was that naive, but eventually I understood the process and now I chuckle when I tell someone I'm writing a book and they say "Oh so you have a publsiher." They have no idea what it takes, you don't just write a page and magically have a publisher but to the everday world they believe it's that simple.

Tara said...

Wow. That video gave me goose bumps!

Kayeleen Hamblin said...

Awesomesauce! It's hard work, for sure. And I'm just going to keep working hard, no matter how derailed I feel. Thanks, Elana!

Michelle Stephens said...

Wow. So powerful. Thanks, Elana!

I hope you don't mind if I put this on my blog (and credit you of course).

Lydia Kang said...

So true. I think about this a lot, especially when I see a gazillion books on the bookstore shelves and it hurts my heart.
Glad your conference went well!

Carol Kilgore said...

Great video. And it most certainly applies to writing. No excuses. Ever.

Lola Sharp said...

I thrive on challenge!
No excuses.

Happy Monday!

Katie said...

IN
CREDIBLE!

I LOVE this! Thanks so much, Elana!!!

Love it!

Stina Lindenblatt said...

I'm so bookmarking this one! I'm not one into watching videos, but this one was worth it.

In fact, I think I'll watch it again now. :D

Jessica said...

That was awesome!!! I think we forget all the hard work that people put into anything, to get where they are. We only see the finished project or finished person and not the blood, sweat and tears that they put into it.
Thanks for sharing that video.

Christine Fonseca said...

Love it...and I AM!!!

L. T. Host said...

SO glad the conference went well. I'll have to catch the video later as I can't watch them at work.

Indigo said...

You and me both. Paul (my other half) said to me just this weekend, "Where is that woman who overcame her disability after she went deaf?"

Hard hitting? Damn right and just what I needed to hear, instead of getting mired in self doubt. If I could overcome those obstacles, I can do this. And so can you. (Hugs)Indigo

P.S. Great video. Definitely inspiring.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Those who are succeeding have merely set the bar a little higher!

Abby Stevens said...

That video gave me chills. I'll have to show it to my husband - he'll love that.

I don't want to be a legendary author, honestly. I just want to be a contributing member of the business. But that, of course, takes all the same grit and perseverance as anything else worth fighting for. And I'm up to it (most days). :)

Jennie Englund said...

That's SO good, Elana! I'm tearing up in Oregon at 8 AM over it.

Have been thinking about risk, risk in my writing.

But it's hard.

And this was incredibly inspiring!

Sandy Shin said...

That's very, very amazing and inspiring! Makes me think about writing (and everything) in a much different way.

Shari said...

That was so, so applicable to a writer's life. Boy, can I relate. It makes me want to work harder.

It was REALLY great to meet you this weekend at the conference. I think you are awesome.

Ian said...

Loved that video - THAT gave me goosebumps. So inspiring.

Glad you had a great time at the conference Elana. I'm far too shy to do something like that.

Katie Ganshert said...

I really like this! It's so true. we have to keep this all in perspective and remember, in the writing world, there is literally no such thing as an overnight success. There might be a person who gets their first book published and that becomes a hit right away...but the person still had to slave over that book. They didn't write it in a week, get an agent, get a publisher and see on the bookshelves a month later.

christi said...

Great video, you're right, and a real motivator on Monday morning!

Southpaw said...

Great inspiring video!

lynnrush said...

I am too!

Laura Marcella said...

Thanks for sharing, Elana! I AM!!!

Jenn Johansson said...

That slide show totally brought tears to my eyes too. I'm glad I wasn't alone. :)

Also... I am.

Solvang Sherrie said...

That video is awesome! I was a huge basketball fan when I lived in Phoenix and I remember watching Michael Jordan on the court with my mouth hanging open. He DID make it look so easy despite the sweat dripping from his body. Such an amazing player and SUCH an inspiring video. Thanks for posting it!

Angie said...

Yeah, I totally teared up too, but then I cry at everything. I hope you can post the whole thing because it was incredible! I am so glad I got to see you this weekend. *hugs*

Sun Up said...

I did tear up at that. It was probably a mixture of my crazy pregnancy hormones and knowing that I saw something that couldn't have come at a better time. There is constant doubt--constant worrying that it's not good enough...that it's not enough.

This...has to be one of the best blog entries I've read in a long time.

I have alot of obstacles in my way and sometimes I can't fathom getting around them. But somehow, I always do. This time is no different.

One of these days...

I wish I could have met you at the conference. But time and money was not permitting. I'm sure you were great. I'll see you on Farmville! -grins-

Sara B. Larson said...

I'm glad people laughed! Hurray!

I've seen this before, and it is powerful - and true. He did work incredibly hard. Too bad he ruined his image with his awful acceptance tirade, *ahem* I mean, speech at the Hall of Fame. But that's another story. ;-) Regardless of his character, he was an amazing player and he worked hard for it. At the AF conference, Caleb said he thinks it's interesting that with every other artistic endeavor (playing piano, singing, painting, pottery, anything!) people expect to take lessons, to practice and work hard to get good. It's only writing that people think they can sit down and be immediately good at. It does take work, practice, and effort. I have been, and I continue to be, willing to work as hard as I can, as long as it takes, to accomplish my goals and dreams and hopefully be a bestselling author. Great post!

Emily Ann Benedict said...

Yes!...Thought honestly, every once and a while it feels unlikely. :? But there's no point in paying attention to those doubts! ;)
Thanks for the encouragement. :D

Patti said...

I loved this video for two reasons. I love basketball and I love Michael Jordan and because it was a good reminder that with hard work anything is possible.

Tamara said...

loved it at storymakers, so glad you posted it. you rock. congrats on your good news.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

I am determined to be up for the challenge, whether I'm up for it or not - and that's most of the battle right there. Right?! :-)

Stephanie Thornton said...

I am so in this for the long haul. People always look at me like I'm crazy when I tell them it takes years to get a book onto the bookshelf at Barnes and Noble. This industry involves buckets of blood, sweat, and tears!

kathrynjankowski said...

Funny, I used to ask my elementary students how often they thought Michael Jordan practiced shooting baskets and they were amazed to learn that he practiced every chance he got.

Writing takes stamina and dedication. It's not for the faint of heart or those who want things to come easy.
;-)

Deni Krueger said...

I have been way too mopey lately, and it's a good reminder to get off my bootie. Congrats on the conference!

Em-Musing said...

A SLAM DUNK video. Where do you post your upcoming conference presentations?

Carolyn V. said...

It was an awesome conference and your class totally rocked!
I loved this video. It truly takes hard work to make it! =)

ali said...

Ha! I posted this video today too! I loved it. And yes, it totally inspired me.

And oh yeah baby. I'm totally IN.

Shallee said...

I loved that slide show as well, and this video. And the whole amazing conference!

I was hoping to talk with you too, and I'm sorry the chance never came! I saw you around a few times, and of course saw you get your awesome award :). Like you said, maybe next year!

Erica Chapman said...

Very cool.

Thanks for sharing, and glad you were so moved by the presentation ;o) Count me in, challenge is my middle name, baby ;o)

Caledonia Lass said...

Wow. Yes I am.

Karen Lange said...

I am! Thanks for sharing this. It was inspiring.

Palindrome said...

your energy is contaigous. I'm up for it!!

Tahereh said...

this was awesome, elana. amazing.

that video literally gave me goosebumps.

you are a rockstar for recognizing it, and for passing it on.

<3333

Tabitha Bird said...

I couldn't get that to load- my computer is too slow I think. But I love those type of commercials. They give me goosebumps too- when I can watch them :)

Oh and yes, I am up for that too!

Jemi Fraser said...

God I hope so! That gave me chills everywhere!! Total and complete awesomeness :)

beth said...

Dude. Awesome commercial! LOVE IT!!!!

Deb Salisbury said...

Love the Michael Jordan commercial - and I normally hate commercials on principle. This one made me tear up.

We can do this. No excuses!

Alleged Author said...

This is awesome!

RaShelle said...

Hey Elana. It was so nice to meet you at the conference. I loved the slide show as well. Good ole Mikey J. He knows just how to put things into perspective.

Christina Farley said...

Oh that video didn't seem long to me. It was awesome. I loved it! I needed it! It rocked! Thanks girl.

Emily J. Griffin said...

I pretty much love that and you for posting it.

L.T. Elliot said...

"We can do hard things."

And doesn't that say it all?

Mary Aalgaard said...

I read about an author who was said to have been "an overnight success." She said, "Yes, after 10 years of hard work." That's a great ad.

PJ Hoover said...

I've seen this and love it each and every time. It's so perfect. I'm so glad you had such a great writing conference!

Terresa said...

LDStorymakers was grand. And this vid was extremely motivating, wasn't it???

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