Monday, June 13, 2005

Of writing and shooting 

The success curve for writing looks a lot like the success curve for shooting.

When I decided to start shooting, I felt like a natural. I was handling the recoil, my stance felt natural, I understood the balance and focus and the projection forward, based on my martial arts training. I was hitting the target. And I was using ammunition that would make most bad guys fall down.

Then I tried different firearms (all handguns) and found which ones I liked. I liked the larger frames. I like Glocks. I love my Glock 9mm because the round is powerful relative to the lightweight frame.

I was improving my accuracy, but slowly. But if you don't train every week, you lose skill. And I haven't been. So my last trip to the range was frustrating at best.

When I decided to start writing for publication, it started easily. I wrote a few pieces of free, and for cheap, and got a thrill seeing my name in print that told me I could continue and improve and maybe make a living at this.

A few assignments in the hundreds of dollars showed me I was doing well. I was improving my query writing skills. I was targeting the right markets.

I've been dealing well with the inevitable rejection letters. But sometimes they remind me how this business will always be a struggle. Always querying, being rejected, sometimes being accepted, no regular salary.

Both writing and shooting started easily for me. But to get good and successful at either takes practice and effort. Sometimes I wish that weren't so.

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