Tuesday, May 18, 2010

COMPETITION

by Jo Robertson


Competition is a healthy enterprise, right?

An individual learns to improve his or her skills, perform under pressure, and experience satisfaction from doing their best, whether it's as a performing artist, an athlete, or a writer.

Last winter much of the world watched the Winter Olympics in Vancouver.

Really, you have to admire the sheer skill and discipline that brings these competitors to this point in their careers.

Might I add the shee
r perserverance? The Olympics is not the place for the faint of heart or the frail of determination. Nor is the world of writing.


Nor of competitive singing! Recently ten-year-old Corinna participated in her first public competitive performance. The venue was a wide, disconcerting area in a mall.She sang "Almost There" from The Princess and the Frog, and I am not at all biased when I claim that her rendition was flawless -- perfect pitch, calm exterior, sassy charm.

She was perfect.

Everything else was not.

The microphone's sound cut out. Feedback screeched through the air. The mall's massive vaulted ceilings sucked up the volume like the last gasping breaths of a dying smoker.

Nina was the first performer of the day, and by the time the second singer's turn came, the acoustical kinks had been worked out. But alas, too late for her.

Everyone always says the three most important traits in attaining your goals are

perseverance

perseverance

perseverance.

She was the epitome of grace under pressure. She never faltered in her composure or her control. When the judges instructed her to begin again, she did so with stunning aplomb.

She was a trooper.

And she didn't cry until she reached the car to go home.

By the way, since I wrote this blog, Corinna semi-finalled in her age group, the only one to do so!

Then she went on to take third place in the finals! You can see her perform at
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tRHyWRhRqsI

What about you? What's been your experience with competition?

Have you ever geared up for an event, worked your heart out, and had everything possible go wrong? How did you handle it? If you're a writer, how do you handle the friendly competition of the industry?


Did you ever compete in something and win? How was that important to you? Did you lose? How did you feel?

68 comments:

Jane said...

Me?

limecello said...

Congrats on the GR, Jane!

Jo, I waver on this topic. I know I *can* be extremely competitive, but I don't think I am, if that make sense. As in I don't turn everything into a competition and I don't have to win everything. :X But when I "turn it on" or am determined to win... well look out.
So, I think I'm conscious of my competitiveness and try to keep it tamped down.
I can definitely be happy for friends who do better than I do, etc. I think what gets my back up is jerks, or people who think they deserve to win etc for no reason. :P Which makes me want to beat them. Hey, I never said it was noble.
And congratulations to Corinna! That's so fantastic :D Best of luck to her!

Jane said...

I'll have to check out Corinna's performance. I suck at competition. Sometimes I wonder why I don't have that competitive edge that most people have. I think it's also because I don't always handle pressure well(sometimes I am able to perform under pressure.) I did compete in a spelling bee in elementary school. The class was divided into two teams, but unfortunately our team lost. I can't imagine being one of those kids competing in the Scripps National Spelling Bee.

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Congrats on the GR, Jane!

GREAT post, Jo-Mama and Corinna is a FABULOUS performer! You have a right to be SUPER PROUD of her!

I am most competitive with myself. I also have the least patience and the highest expectations of MYSELF!

I don't enjoy the pressure of competition and have never been good at competitive events. I remember being in the Spelling Bee for our whole school district when I was in 5th or 6th grade and I HATED every second of it. I am a fairly good speller, but only because I memorize most words. When the competition came around the next year, my teacher wanted me to enter and I refused! :-P

I LOVE the spirit of cooperation and genuine happiness in the success of others that permeates the romance writing community. It is truly a pleasure to be surrounded by such supportive people.

AC

jo robertson said...

Yay, Jane!! Yes, you!!

jo robertson said...

Limecello said, "I waver on this topic. I know I *can* be extremely competitive, but I don't think I am, if that make sense"

Makes perfect sense to me! I'm competitive in certain areas of my life, but not at all in others. I like to "win" in the areas where I think I'm competent!

And I'm with you on hating people who think they "deserve" to win!

Thanks on Corinna's behalf. She really wanted to come in second place, but the girl who took that position was extraordinary!

jo robertson said...

Jane said, "I can't imagine being one of those kids competing in the Scripps National Spelling Bee"

I KNOW, Jane! Some of the words I've never heard of LOL! Those are pretty amazing kids.

I'm sure your lack of competitiveness speaks to your sense of self-confidence. You probably don't feel the need to prove anything.

Have a little arm-chair psychology with the morning blog, LOL.

jo robertson said...

AC said, "I LOVE the spirit of cooperation and genuine happiness in the success of others that permeates the romance writing community"

So true, Cindy. This is what is most special about the Banditas to me. We celebrate each other's successes and mourn one another's hard knocks. Writing sisters in the best sense of the word.

Christine Wells said...

Hi Jo! Wow, what a lot of talent in a small package. Loved that video of Corinna. She has a beautiful voice and tons of attitude. I'm sure she'll go far!

I've never been a very competitive person, but I did go on a TV game show when I was 11. I won the first day and got to the final round of the champion of champions day, when I was knocked out. Sigh. It was heartbreaking but a good life lesson! It's all experience, isn't it?

Congrats, Jane!

Helen said...

Jane well done have fun with him he is probably very tired after being with the grandkids

Jo
She is beautiful congrats to her well done.
I am not a very competitive person and never have been probably because I am not fond of any conflict that can happen when things get tough in some competions. I am sure that if I did enter any competition if things were going to go wrong then it would for me, I am happy to sit back and let everyone else try and am very happy for them when they win.

Have Fun
Helen

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

I could listen and watch that little girl all day, just fantastic.

I am not a competitive person. I don't handle the limelight well at all. I did do a talent contest in third grade with two other little girls and that came out fine (3rd place) but even then they knew to keep me to the back and just let my voice do the work. High school I was supposed to be in a play, I did fine all through rehersals, laughing joking, not a problem, until the night of the performance and I doubled over in pain, thought it was appendicitis, uh no, just a major case of nerves.

Anna Sugden said...

What a great post, Jo. And what a talented girl Corinna is! I admire her greatly.

I'm another ditherer about competitive things. I LOVE watching competitive sports (as anyone who's ever been to a hockey or football game with me can attest!). I have huge admiration for the determination and perseverance and grit and heart of players at all levels of their game.

I'm a strong believer too in competitive sports at school - for a number of children, it is their one chance to excel in something. And, it teaches a little humility and how to deal with defeat to pupils who are strong academically.

I'm also a strong believer in having to suffer the agony of defeat in order to be able to achieve the heights of success. It adds that extra something often needed to go that extra mile. Probably a good thing because in this game, you get a lot of agony for those moments of success!

As for myself, I'm competitive in the things I want to succeed in. But, it's more about me being #1 than about others not being #1 (at least it is now, with the benefit of age and maturity *g*), if that makes sense. I applaud the success of my fellow romance writers and use it to encourage me to keep trying. Am I envious of their success? Sure. But, I try to tell myself that my time will come and they're proof that it can happen.

I've been lucky enough to be doing well in writing contests at the moment - all with the aim of trying to catch an editor's or agent's eye. To receive a call or email that you've got the final is wonderful. When the phone is silent - it sucks. It's great when you win or place high and get a request for more material. It can be miserable when you come fifth out of five.

I believe what they say about contests preparing you for the reality of reviews! You can be uplifted or sent into a spiral of despair by judges' comments!

Anna Sugden said...

Oh, and anyone in business will tell you that there is definitely some kind of unwritten law of fates that the number of things that will go wrong is in direct proportion to the importance of the meeting!

Caren Crane said...

Jane, congrats on the GR and GOOD LUCK. He has been impossible the past few days...

Jo, I'm so proud of Corinna. What a talent and what composure! As a sophomore, I was on Quiz Team in high school (can't remember what it's called now) and we drilled for months and months. When we got to competition, I was an alternate (as an underclassman) but got sent into one round.

One of our questions came up and I knew it was one we submitted and had answered a million times, so I hit the buzzer. And choked. I tried to force the answer out past my frozen tongue, but just could not. The other team took that one and I thought my friends and teammates would murder me. Horrors!

I eventually lived it down, but that was a trial by fire. We did respectably in the competition, but did not win. I did better in the math competitions, where all we did was take an individual test. *g*

Caren Crane said...

Oh, I also was in a bunch of strings and orchestra competitions, since I played violin. Again, all you did was go into a room and play for a panel of judges. While it was nerve-wracking, at least it was only a few people and I wasn't letting down a team, only myself, if I didn't do well. I mostly did well in those, though. *g*

Susan Sey said...

Oh, Jo, this is such a great topic. I am NOT a competitive person. Which means writing is perfect for me.

It all happens inside my head, see, & the only person I'm striving against is myself. I guess when the books go out into the world, they measure up against other people's work but during the creation process, they're just mine. And the only person standing in the way of making them better is me.

But in terms of competition in general, I'm much more of a cooperative person. I hate monopoly (the board game) because all you're trying to do is bankrupt your friends. It's not an activity that appeals to me. :-)

Joan said...

I have competed in various things through my life. Most recently, of course, in writing contests. I've been VERY blessed to win and place in many prestigious ones.

But I never experienced TRUE cometitiveness until I started competing in the KY state fair baking contests.

I've won over 100 ribbons over 20 years even the cake sweepstakes. Well pleased with all of that but it is the specialty contests that brought out the "I want to win" monster in me.

It was a cookie competition. YOu make your cookies then sit and watch the judges judge them

One of the Grand Dames of the Fair had her 10 yo granddaughter with her. This little girl had won some ribbons and had a story about it in our newspaper.

She told me the story. I smiled and said "That's really great"

She told me the story again....

And again.....


And again. "Wow" I said through gritted teeth.

On the 15th retelling I just looked at her and said "Well, Nanny, nanny poo poo"

Yes, I Nanny, nanny poo pooed a 10 yo.

:-)

Donna MacMeans said...

LOL Joan - That needy little girl was praise deprived. But I think the frequent retelling would have worn thin on me as well.

Wow Jo. Corinne is very talented. We'll be seeing her on American Idol one of these days. Meanwhile the bumps and bad accoustics will only make her more experienced as to what to expect as the first performer- and that is bound to come in handy later on when the stakes are more important. Remember the adage - what doesn't kill us, makes us stronger.

I'm afraid I'm very competitive. I blame it on my brother who is two years older than me. We seemed to be in constant competition for grades, privileges, attention - you name it. I was in art competitions in elementary school, speech competitions in high school, exams in college (they're a form of competition, aren't they?) then more art competitions followed by writing competitions. I've learned to be a gracious loser LOL. But you can't win unless you try.

jo robertson said...

Christine said, "I've never been a very competitive person, but I did go on a TV game show when I was 11. I won the first day and got to the final round of the champion of champions day"

OMG, Christine!! That's huge and only verifies my opinion of how smart you are LOL. What was the game show? Did you win anything?

The extent of my game show experience is shouting out JEOPARDY answers from my armchair where I always know the correct answer, of course.

jo robertson said...

Helen said, "I am not a very competitive person and never have been probably because I am not fond of any conflict"

I know what you mean. The conflict is just too stressful. But some people feed on that stress, I think.

How are the grandkids doing? They're growing so fast!

jo robertson said...

Oh, no, Dianna, what a traumatic experience! Did you end up playing the part or did you have an understudy?

I've heard some professional singers say they throw up right before every performance and then they're all right and go on to perform.

jo robertson said...

Anna said, "I'm a strong believer too in competitive sports at school - for a number of children, it is their one chance to excel in something"

Beautifully said, Anna, your whole comment was spot on! I think kids need to TRY something in order to conquer their fears. It gives them an opportunity to succeed and discover what they really like doing.

jo robertson said...

Anna also said, "But, it's more about me being #1 than about others not being #1"

Absolutely! Healthy competition is good and in the writing business your success doesn't mean someone else fails. Even in these hard economic times, there's enough of the pie to go around.

Barbara Monajem said...

Hmm. This is a sticky issue with me. Externally, I'm not competitive at all, and I never, ever entered anything that would put me on the spot. I do like watching some sports (such as hockey) but I've never wanted to play them. However, in eighth grade I was really, really good at in rope climbing (now I probably couldn't climb six inches, alas) and I was so determined to come first that I got awful rope burns from sliding back down the rope at super-speed. So that probably makes me a competitive wimp...? I only strive to win when I know I can.

Anyway. Internally, I don't feel competitive most of the time. But once in a while... urgh, some demon of competitiveness surges up inside me, and...eeek! Where did that come from? Surely that's not me. Unfortunately, seeing as I'm not *really* possessed (or at least I don't think so), I guess it actually is.

I love the cooperative atmosphere of the romance-writing community. It's an environment where you can do your best to produce a good product while being supportive of and supported by others.

jo robertson said...

Caren said, "As a sophomore, I was on Quiz Team in high school"

Is that like College Bowl? Or some high schools call it Academic Bowl, I think.

jo robertson said...

Susan said, "I am NOT a competitive person. Which means writing is perfect for me"

Cool way to say it, Susan. In writing you really compete with yourself, don't you? Making each successive book better than the last one?

It's very self-defeating, I think, for a writer to compare herself to other writers because the creative process is so unique to each person.

jo robertson said...

Joanie said, "On the 15th retelling I just looked at her and said 'Well, Nanny, nanny poo poo'"

ROTFLOL!! That's hilarious, Joan. What an obnoxious little girl. Honestly, it's bad enough to be a "stage mom," but if you are, at least teach your child to win graciously.

Joan, I just get chills every time I think of all the State Fair contests you've won. Seriously. If I were an envious person, I'd be all over that. I'd love to be a first-class baker, but alas, that ship has sailed and I have to stick with my cookies from a Betty Crocker pouch!

jo robertson said...

Donna said, "I'm afraid I'm very competitive. I blame it on my brother who is two years older than me"

Isn't that true? Family dynamics play a big part in a person's sense of competitiveness, I think. I like how Corinna's mother handles her competing -- gracious losing is very important!

jo robertson said...

Hi, Barbara! "I love the cooperative atmosphere of the romance-writing community. It's an environment where you can do your best to produce a good product while being supportive of and supported by others."

I hear this kind of comment over and over about our community. There's something very comforting and secure when you're among a group of writers who encourage you do succeed in a positive way!

Christie Kelley said...

Jo, that video of Corinna is absolutely wonderful.

I'm sort of a competitive person but not with everything. When I play games, absolutely. With writing, I'm not as competitive as I was when I was unpublished. When I was unpubbed, I entered a ton of contests, finaled in many but won only two. It definitely can be disappointing to enter a contest and not even final but I learned over the years that it's really a crap shoot. It all depends on the judges you get.

I finaled in one published author contest with Every Night I'm Yours and was sure I wouldn't win. After all, I was up against a RITA winner and a USA bestselling author. This was my first book so I assumed there wasn't a chance. I couldn't believe it when I won. Honestly, until the award came, I didn't believe it.

I think competition can be a good motivated as long as you don't let it take over your life.

Kennan said...

GO CORINNA! amazing how much soul comes out of that little body!

i LOVE competition myself; i think it is because it motivates me to do my best. i'm okay with not winning, but boy, it feels good when i do :) i remember my first real strong competitive feelings in first grade. there was a contest (and i always used to perk up at that word..still do) for making a valentine box to house all the school valentines. Shannon and i spent all night making one that was 3-tiered like a wedding cake. uh, yes, i won. after that, i loved competition because it made doing something more exciting. now i just get to compete for loudest voice in the house and that ain't as fun.

jo robertson said...

Hi, Kennan! Thanks for stopping by.

Kennan said, "in first grade. there was a contest for making a valentine box to house all the school valentines. Shannon and i spent all night making one that was 3-tiered like a wedding cake. uh, yes, i won"

First grade!!?? Way back then you were so talented. That's amazing. Does your sister take partial credit for it LOL?

jo robertson said...

Kennan also said, "i'm okay with not winning, but boy, it feels good when i do :)"

Yeah, it's a real adrenaline rush, isn't it? I understand why/how people who run marathons push themselves.

jo robertson said...

Hi, Christie. I agree. Writing is one of the competitions that's more subjective than others, especially in romance circles.

Thanks for the compliments toward Corinna. As an ex-music teacher (one year in junior high and wasn't THAT a joy LOL), I think she has real talent. But it definitely takes drive and ambition fand dedication as well as talent.

The judges in music seem to be more fair than in writing contests. They're usually people active in the business who understand what it takes to be a competitive performer. I was really impressed with Corinna's judges.

jo robertson said...

And congrats, Christie, on your pubbed author win. It's even sweeter when you're up against big name authors!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Wait...the competition in publishing is friendly? Really?

Grins. Maybe in the Lair.

Hey Jane! You nabbed the boide! the GR can take a bite of the apple for the day. Ha!

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

So, Jo, I have to say that I adore that pic of your g-daughter. She's a sassy one all right. Go her! And that video was cool.

I wasn't a competitor as a child, my folks didn't believe in that "sort of thing", although I think it builds character and...you guessed it, perserverance. I learned to compete in school, at jobs and in the working world. I competed in Tae Kwon Do. I competed in contests for writing.

Sometimes I won, sometimes I lost. My Ninjitsu master, another martial art I took, told me you learn as much or more from being "uke" the demonstration partner/loser in the bout as you do from winning. Sometimes I agreed with him, sometimes, I didn't. Grins.

How's that for fence-sitting?

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Jane, I'm with you on the Scripps National Spelling Bee. That would be torture, wouldn't it? ALllllll those words! I usually pride myself on my vocabulary, but those kids know some serious stuff. Wowie zowie.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

AC said:
I am most competitive with myself. I also have the least patience and the highest expectations of MYSELF!


Yep, me too, AC. I'm always harder on myself, set the bar higher for myself, etc. than anyone else could.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Anna S said: I applaud the success of my fellow romance writers and use it to encourage me to keep trying.

*applauds* And we for you, m'dear! I'm SO thrilled about your Fab 5 WIN!! YIPPPEEEEE!!! WOOT!!!!

And here in the Lair we celebrate those kinds of wins.

Paolo! The Champagne! *pops cork*

Exxxxcellent. Here, Anna, have a glass. Everyone, a toast: TO ANNA's latest WIN! (Check out the sidebar for the others, she's on a roll!)

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Anna said: Oh, and anyone in business will tell you that there is definitely some kind of unwritten law of fates that the number of things that will go wrong is in direct proportion to the importance of the meeting!

I just have one word in response:
Amen.

jo robertson said...

Jeanne said, " And we for you, m'dear! I'm SO thrilled about your Fab 5 WIN!! YIPPPEEEEE!!! WOOT!!!!"

Double and triple whoooottt!! for Anna S.

Awards and wins are just excuses . . . uh occasions for bringing on the bubbly and the cabana boys. Although I've been so tired lately, getting ready for my big family reunion, that I'd use those cabana boys for a relaxing massage!

Nancy said...

Jo, congratulations on Corinna's performance and on her grit.

My main experience with competition was intercollegiate debate. On occasion, yes, we did work our hearts out only to get slammed in a round. There's a national topic every year, like "Resolved that the federal government should adopt comprehensive land use controls." Competition teams work up cases in support of that resolution and try to anticipate what other people might argue so they can defend against other teams.

(In most tournaments, a team went affirmative, supporting the resolution, in one round and negative, opposing it, in the next. In elimination rounds, sides were decided by coin toss.)

Life is easier if you're in the affirmative. You pull out what you've prepared and roll.

If you're in the negative, opposing the resolution, your job is to shoot down the affirmative case. If it hasn't occurred to you, however, that someone might present a case based on, oh, the sex trade, you got nothin'. You have to dig into your materials, try to come up with something you can warp into relevance, and then address the affiramtive team's points.

It's not a happy feeling, I promise.

Nancy said...

Jane, congrats on the rooster! I hope you'll keep him busy.

Nancy said...

Uh, that's the affirMAtive team's points. Urk!

jo robertson said...

Jeanne said, "I wasn't a competitor as a child, my folks didn't believe in that "sort of thing", although I think it builds character and...you guessed it, perserverance"

I hear you, Jeanne. Nothing worse than parents who PUSH their kids into something they're not interested in, or are too young for (I'm thinking Jon Benet Ramsey), but sometimes talent can't be denied. You see those competitors on American Idol work their hearts out for a dream. As long as they're learning life lessons along the way.

On one of Corinna's performances, I noticed that she walked through the aisle to get to her family DURING another person's performance. Boy, did she ever get a dressing down from her mother!

Just sayin' there's a right way and a wrong way to compete. And a person's natural gifts are just that -- a gift that should be respected and treasured and displayed only with grace.

Okay, off soapbox now LOL!

jo robertson said...

Jeanne said, "I competed in Tae Kwon Do"

I'm sooooo jealous of that! I'd love to be able to learn that kind of physical endeavor. I'm so clumsy, it wouldn't have happened even when I was younger!

megan said...

I do not like competition. I believe it is because I spent most of my childhood in my sister's shadow. And her shadow was very large! She competed for lots of things, and won. Me, not so much. One thing I do remember is trying out for cheerleading in 7th grade. My sister was already on the 8th grade squad. When they called my name that I had made it, I remember running so fast and jumping in her arms! It was a great feeling, especially having her there to share it with!
Now don't get me wrong. I am NOT bitter! I know now that I am not a go getter, motivated, over achiever! I enjoy being average! (But I am also pretty darn cute!)

jo robertson said...

Nancy said, "My main experience with competition was intercollegiate debate"

I think debate is one of the best kinds of competition, Nancy. It involves so many skills that are great for a person in later life, business, careers. Win or lose, the person really learns something valuable.

jo robertson said...

Megan said, "When they called my name that I had made it, I remember running so fast and jumping in her arms! It was a great feeling, especially having her there to share it with!"

That was an exhilarating moment for the mom too! So nice to have two daughters on the team!

PJ said...

Wow! She's wonderful, Jo! You should send that video to Ellen Degeneres. She loves to spotlight young talent on her show.

Nancy said...

Jo, I think I got a lot out of debate, not least the confidence to stand up and talk, even when I had to wing it. We did even win on occasion. However, I am competitive, always was, and I much prefer winning to all other possible finishes.

When it comes to writing, however, I realize that while only one person can win any given contest, more than one can sell. It's the same, or so I tell myself, with the slush pile.

jo robertson said...

What I like most about debate, Nancy, is the training you get in the ability to think on your feet. Great for interviews, pitches to editors and agents, and teaching if you go into that field.

jo robertson said...

Awww, PJ, that's so sweet of you to say that! I don't think her mother even thought of that.

You know how you worry about putting your kids out there for the known universe to see.

jo robertson said...

One of the most interesting competitions I was in was writing the script for a "roadshow." For those who don't know the concept, the idea is to write, cast, and perform a 12-15 minutes "show," generally centered around a theme. Ours was "Fractured Fairy Tales," and I was so proud when our particular group won! I didn't do anything but write the script, but it was quite thrilling.

jo robertson said...

For anyone who's still around and reading the blog LOL, I'll throw this question out.

What do you when you and one of your best friends are in competition for the same thing? Job, award, writing contract? That's a tough one, isn't it?

PJ said...

What do you when you and one of your best friends are in competition for the same thing? Job, award, writing contract? That's a tough one, isn't it?

I had a taste of that in high school. I competed in a beauty pageant with many of my best friends. It was fascinating to see how contestants reacted to the success of others and even more so to see how their moms reacted! I came in 5th out of 32 contestants and was thrilled with my placement. I was also very happy for the winner who was one of my best friends. (I credit my grandmother for my attitude) Sadly, I discovered that many of my "friends", people I had known since kindergarten, didn't view my success (coming in 5th) in the same light. If you want to know which people are your friends and which aren't, go head to head in a competition!

PinkPeony said...

Jo...thanks to your mention of "Fractured Fairy Tales" the theme song is now going through my head!It's been years since I've competed for anything. I guess entering contests have ramped up my competitive spirit somewhat but like some of you have said, I too, am my harshest critic.

Jeanne (AKA The Duchesse) said...

Jo said: Just sayin' there's a right way and a wrong way to compete. And a person's natural gifts are just that -- a gift that should be respected and treasured and displayed only with grace.

This is SO true, Jo! I see this a lot on the baseball field with teams playing my oldest child's team. Some of the kids like to play, but obviously NOT to compete. They should be playing rec league and having fun, but the dads/moms want them to COMPETE!

It's hard to watch and hard on the kids. Its also hard on the kids who are ready to compete at a higher level and have a go at it, when there are a number of the kids on the team who aren't "there" and never will be.

jo robertson said...

Jeanne, Little League is so painful sometimes. They're just little kids but some really have potential and some just want to have fun. I don't envy the coaches.

Sydney is on an all-boys (except her) flag football team. At 8, she's a really good athlete and loves to play EVERY sport. She'd coordinated and fast, but she'll never have the upper body strength of a boy.

jo robertson said...

Pink said, "thanks to your mention of "Fractured Fairy Tales" the theme song is now going through my head!"

LOL, PP, what's that from? We did that theme way back in the sixties!

jo robertson said...

PJ said, "Sadly, I discovered that many of my 'friends', people I had known since kindergarten, didn't view my success (coming in 5th) in the same light."

Unfortunately, many people feel that can succeed only if they're better than, prettier than, smarter than, etc., someone else.

I was very proud of my middle daughter Kennan who was both valedictorian and homecoming queen of her graduating class. The HC queen was by popular vote and she'd assisted a freshman Spanish class all year. Those kids loved her and came out in droves to vote for her, upsetting the "normal" social order. It was way cool!

Beth said...

Jo! Your granddaughter is amazing! I couldn't stop smiling as I watched the video *g*

I'm not very competitive but our kids have been in several competitions and more than their fair share of sporting events :-)

I do feel it's important for kids to learn how to compete and win or lose graciously.

TerriOsburn said...

I'm way too late to catch up on the comments but I had to tell you, I watched the YouTube video and that girl is amazing. What a talent. I'm guessing we'll be buying her records someday. Or watching her on Broadway.

I always competed in sports as a kid and from age 5 to 8 I was in pageants. I never really got nervous because I was just walking and posing and walking the other way and posing. How hard is that? For a total extrovert, not very hard. :)

In recent years I was more likely to MC the competition than be in it. Which is fine with me. But I am hoping to jump into the writing competition later this year by submitting my work for the first time. Feel more like competing against myself than all the other writers.

jo robertson said...

TerriOsburn said, "I always competed in sports as a kid and from age 5 to 8 I was in pageants"

How cool is that??!! You must've been a cute kid. I can totally see you as an emcee!

How exciting that you're thinking about your first writing submissions. Come to the Lair to rejoice in your finals and wins! We'll cheer you on.

Seriously, this is a huge step. You can't imagine how many writers don't get up the courage to submit. You go!!

jo robertson said...

Thanks, Beth! Terri, too!

Corinna's learning a lot of skills with her singing, far more than just the talent, which is what pleases me most. There are tons of singers, but gracious, sweet people? Not so many.

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

Oh no, I didn't do the part, thankfully had an understudy and she was just slightly better than I was.......LOL Thank heavens for bit parts, I was taken home and put to bed. My swan song you might say I never attempted getting near a stage again.

jo robertson said...

Dianna said, "My swan song you might say I never attempted getting near a stage again"

Oh, no, Dianna, so sorry! That's pretty traumatic. You might've been the next Sarah Bernhardt!