Tuesday, April 10, 2012

On Golf and Writing

Sometimes we just need a little push.  Some positive energy.  Take golf for example.  I can play 17 crappy holes, but that one great shot brings me back.  After the game, having a sub-par sandwich and an ice-cold beer, the conversation goes something like this:

What about number 5, huh?  That par 3?  What a shot over the water!  Yeah, okay, the first ball went in the drink, but still!  What a shot - right over and on the green!  30 feet from the pin, but still...pin high!  Unbelievable ball!

Oh, and how about that putt on 17!  Geez, that was what? 30? 40 feet?  What a line I had on that one!

God!  Can't wait to play next weekend!

Forget about the 16 holes of balls on the beach, balls in the drink, balls in the rough, chunked fairway shots and 3-putters.

For me, golf imitates writing.  I don't send out that many pieces -one or two essays or feature articles a month at most - but the feeling I get when I see an acceptance letter is always the same.  Feels like the very first time (to quote Foreigner).

This year, I've sent out a total of five pieces.  Three to Sasee Magazine, of which two have been published, and two to Chicken Soup for the Soul, of which one (so far - I'm optimistic) will be published.  I'm batting 500, which is pretty great.  Now, what would happen if I could bump up my submissions to three a month?  Could I keep those odds?  Maybe not.  But, the one thing I know for sure (Thanks Oprah), is that anything I don't send has a 0% chance of getting published.  So, better to keep writing.

If you have any interest, all my published articles are listed on the right side of this blog page.  Most of them you can get to with a click of the mouse.  The Chicken Soup stories...well, you'll have to buy the books, but they're worth it!  And while you're at it, check out their website...www.chickensoup.com.  They're always coming out with new titles, and looking for true stories from real people.  I'm sure you have a story to tell...why not get paid for it?

I also manage a blog for the marketing agency for which I work.  If you're in the industry, or a student hoping to be, you might find something of interest here:  www.sji-inc-blog.com.

Come to think of it, I also guest blog for an online industry blog called Beneath the Brand.  Those articles are listed on the right of this page, too (another one just got accepted today!).

But I digress, sometimes all it takes to drive us forward is a little taste of success.  What's your dream?  Have you given it a shot? Why the hell not?  It just might come true.  Then, of course, you'll be creating new dreams, bigger goals.  And there's nothing wrong with that.  In fact, I haven't hit par on one hole yet this year, so that's my next goal.  Hell, maybe I'll even keep score next time I'm out on the links.  Like, real numbers, and not just those stars and smiley faces I use now (you should see my score card sometime...).

Happy Dreaming!


  1. I know nothing about golf, Beth, but your comparison made sense. However, I love the idea of stars and smiley faces keeping score. (Although MY score card would probably be covered with grimacing faces.)

  2. A hole in one, that's what you're shooting for, oh yeah, ever mind, you've succeeded, at least in the writing world! Congrats on all your accomplishments.

  3. Beth, good grief, I guess I didn't play golf long enough (one year) and I found it so frustrating I became a whole different person and it wasn't pretty as they say. I decided I didn't need to pay money to lose my cool... and all I could think about was how I could be writing instead of being aggravated!

  4. Oh and congrats on all your publishing!

  5. Love the golf analogy--how true. And congratulations on your many publications!