Saturday, November 7, 2009

The Four Shared "Ps" of Golf and Writing

My last post included several similarities between playing golf and writing a book, and asked all of you to think of ways in which one of your passions could translate into a publication.

I've thought about the connection between golf and writing some more, and developed a list of the "Ps" that anyone must incorporate into their participation in either activity. I know that I found all of these concepts to be true when writing my three published novels.

Practice -- If you want to lower your handicap and impress your buddies on Saturday morning out on the course, you need to practice your swing regularly. Take some time after work or during your lunch hour to hit some balls at the local range. Walk out to your backyard and work on your grip and stance. Practice also is required for writers. Aspiring authors are told to write something every day, just to keep that creation of expression fresh.

Perseverance -- It takes years of studying the game to reach a point at which you are happy with the way you move the golf ball across the greens. You need to keep asking for pointers, entering tournaments, and just getting out there. In the writing world, you first need the mental strength to work through an entire novel. Then, once you finish the book, you also need perseverance as you contact potential publishers and agents.

Patience -- Whether you are frustrated that your golf ball keeps hanging just a bit to the left or you are stuck on how the next scene of your novel should play out, you should sometimes stop for a deep breath and then come back to the problem. Anything worth doing is going to take time and effort.

Perfection -- Even when a devoted golfer has the best game of his life, he still will find a flaw in his performance. He always wants to do better. Writers are also their own worst critics. A published book is such a personal offering and you want it to be flawless. It is usually a good idea to walk away from the keyboard when you get frustrated and come back later with a fresh set of eyes.

There probably could be a similar list for nearly every letter of the alphabet (OK, maybe "X" would be difficult). Can you think of anything to add?

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