I have read that most writers are risk-takers. I would never place myself in the category of a daredevil, which to me is the same thing as one taking a risk.
Risk-takers, to me, are extreme sportsmen, drug users, or perhaps some Olympians. Take Shaun White, the US snowboarder, for example. During the winter Olympics, I became very interested in this sport. I know nothing of it, except the little I've seen on TV. Shaun won the gold medal. How? By inventing a new, complicated, dangerous move, which he performed on his last trial. He pulled it off without a hitch, and while the other contestants played it safe with no errors, he took a chance with something more complicated and also pulled it off with no errors. Gold!
Evan Lysacek also represented the United States in men's figure-skating. His performance was flawless, perfection on ice, a routine he'd practiced, literally, for years. His Russian counter-point, the medal favorite, took a chance and executed a move than no one else did. But! The judges weren't looking for extraordinary moves—they were looking for those within the guidelines, and a contestant who skated those perfectly. Who won the gold? Not the risk-taker, this time, but the one who played it safe.
Do you take risks in writing and submitting? Do you try for the agent who will take you to the top? Or do you play it safe, sticking only with the area you know best and feel somewhat confident of earning some success?
Me? I have taken risks, and not one person I know would believe that I did. I don't look the part, I don't act with bravado, in fact, I look like a Sunday school teacher. In my forties, I signed on to be a sponsor to take forty high school students skiing. I had never skied in my life. There were four other female sponsors, along with four male sponsors. At the mountain resort, all of us donned skis on the bunny slope and tried it out for most of one day. By the second day, all females had quit except me. I went on the second day with two men to an intermediate slope. Down we went, back and forth. On the third and last day, the men enticed me to go to the next harder slope, which I did. I had several mishaps, frightening ones, but each time I stood up and kept going. At the end of the day, I'd stayed with those men, even though I ached and hurt all over. I never skied again, though.
The same thing happened when I learned to play golf at age forty. I studied and worked, and soon I was winning money and trophies at our local course. I couldn't have been happier during those years. Other women said, "Man, you came out here to win!" "Yes," I said, "why would I come out here to lose?"
And so, I'm a mix of risk-taker vs. play- it-safer kind of author. One day, I hope to take a really big chance and try for the gold. Right now? I'm playing it safe.
What about you? Risk-taker? Play-safer?
Romance…and a little bit o' Texas
TEXAS BLUE-eBook and Print
SHOWDOWN IN SOUTHFORK—eBook
ALL MY HOPES AND DREAMS-eBook and Print
Published by: The Wild Rose Press