When I was just getting started, I wrote poetry.
The most important kind of poetry there is–BAD poetry–but that’s not the point. I wrote poetry and I knew from the start what I would call my first collection of (bad) poems.
Secrets Told to the Blue Stripe on the Swimming Pool Floor.
I didn’t start writing until late high school, right around the time I took up swimming. I’ve never been on a swim team, it’s always just been for me, and I quickly found the strangest…peace, while swimming laps.
Still, it’s a repetitive activity, and in the beginning, I’d tell the blue stripe that ran down the lap lane all about my day. I’d tell it about the ups and downs, the work I had to do, the drama and the fun and then I’d tell it about the story ideas I had. Over time, as I got better at swimming, I’d tell the blue stripe more and more. It became a confidant.
That blue stripe listened as I finished my first book, as I got an agent, as that book went on sub. It listened in its steady, unflinching way to each rejection, no matter how nice. It listened to revisions, more rejections, to my newest book idea, to the day I wrote “The End” and to that book’s submission and that book’s sale. It stayed with me through ten months of edits and an agent change and another book, through all the stress and excitement that comes with this incredible journey.
So along comes Thanksgiving and I’m thinking of all that I’m thankful for. And I start to think about the amazing online community I’m part of. And I realize…
You are the blue stripe.
Or another kind of stripe, since most of YOU aren’t submerged beneath several feet of water. But you have been an incredible support system. You have been there for me through the ups and downs so far, you’ve cheered with me, and grumbled with me on bad days, and offered tea and hugs and I just really, really, really could not do this without you.
So thank you.*
*Yes, I’m…several days late for all the giving of thanks posts, but I swear it was intentional and not the result of eating too much and ending up in a mutli-day food coma.
*Also can we bask in the cheesiness of this post? I’m sorry. I’m usually so ANTI-CHEESE–the emotional kind, of course, as real cheese is 95% of my daily intake–but I had to say it.
ETA: But oh my, this is what happens when I write posts after midnight, because the lovely Leigh has brought up the MOST IMPORTANT DIFFERENCE. You, my lovelies, are better than the blue stripe. My blue stripe can listen, but cannot talk back. You all inspire me, enrich me, provide laughs and thoughts and incredible moments. So yeah, you > blue stripe.