Going to the Bookstore for Some Motivation!

June 7, 2009 in Fantasy, On Writing by pacejmiller

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When the smoke from my exams finally cleared, it was time to get back to reading and writing again (after a much needed break to clear my mind, of course).

It had been over a month since I last worked on my fantasy novel, and as excited as I was to recommence work on it, it also felt kind of daunting.  I had to reacquaint myself with the plot, the characters and the fantasy world that I spent so long creating and getting used to.

And even though I had the opportunity to do so this morning, I chickened out.  It was easier just to blog, or to read the news, or play some video games instead.

Anyway, we were meeting some friends in town for lunch, and while waiting, we waltzed into Borders for some light reading to pass the time.  I’m glad we did because I’m totally psyched to get back to work on the novel now!

A bookstore restores a writer’s fire like nothing else.  Just seeing row after row of books lined up like that made me realise how badly I want to finish this novel!  Flicking through some of the books on the stands made me think – ‘if they can do this, then so I can!’  But it was also rather frightening, because picking up a good book could make me think – ‘there’s no way I can ever write anything as good as this!’  Seeing the isles of published novels also made me think – ‘so many people have already been published, surely it can’t be that hard’.  But at the same time I thought – ‘this is nothing compared to the number of aspiring writers out there, it must be impossible to get published!’  And so there I was like a true idiot, switching rapidly between optimism and pessimism.  Fortunately, I left with the former firmly etched into my mind.

Starting tomorrow!

Federer Finally Wins the French Open!

June 7, 2009 in Tennis by pacejmiller

How sweet it is!

How sweet it is!

At last, Roger Federer has the career slam!

Not long after I wondered whether Roger’s run to the French Open Final was too good to be true, conventional wisdom prevailed in the end as Federer crushed a shell-shocked Robin Soderling in straight sets, 6-1, 7-6 (7-1), 6-4 to win the last Grand Slam missing from his trophy room.

That makes it 14 Grand Slams (5 Wimbledon, 5 US Open, 3 Australian Open, 1 French Open) in total, matching the record held by the great Pete Sampras – but one could argue that Federer is now the undisputed greatest of all time because he has the only Grand Slam that Sampras never came close to capturing.  Interestingly, Andre Agassi, the last man to capture the career slam (and the only other man in the Open Era) was on the dais to present the trophy to a teary Roger.  It was a fitting end to a dramatic, almost magical fortnight where 4-time defending champion Rafael Nadal was ousted by Soderling in dramatic fashion and Federer struggled through 2 come-from-behind 5-setters to reach the Final.

Just when experts thought Federer had reached the end of his glorious career, he comes up delivering one of the greatest moments in tennis history.  Now the question will inevitably shift to whether he can reclaim the Wimbledon title he lost to Nadal last year (in perhaps the greatest match of all time), and in doing so, break Sampras’ record.  With Nadal out of Queens and questionable for Wimbledon, I’m sure people will start hopping back on the Federer bandwagon.  But with the likes of Murray and Djokovic eager to seize glory for themselves, I wouldn’t start carving Roger’s name on the trophy just yet.  However, after what I just witnessed I’m never going to count Federer out ever again.

[PS: Federer is 27 years and 303 days old.  Sampras was 31 years and 27 days when he won his 14th Grand Slam]

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