Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Z Is For Zip Line

Jennifer talks about challenging herself…

Over the summer, my husband, one of my daughters and I went on an obstacle course and zip line. I have never been so scared in my life. Even though I was attached to a harness, I was convinced I was going to die pretty much the entire time. Although my husband and daughter cheered me on, and were proud that I completed it, I vowed never to go on it again.

At the end of the obstacle course, there was a zip line. I’ve got to admit, it was pretty lame. It was short and boring, but after what I’d just been through, it was perfect. I actually enjoyed that part and it was a relief after the struggle I’d just been through.

My husband and daughter are already making plans to do the obstacle course again. I, most definitely, am not. However, as 2016 ends and I start to look ahead to 2017, the obstacle course and zip line pose a good analogy for my writing life.

2016 was a struggle for many reasons, but writing-wise, there were many ups and downs. Granted, it wasn’t as awful as the obstacle course, but there were many times when I was ready to give up. And then I simplified, readjusted my focus, got rid of some stressful activities that were hampering my ability to write. It wasn’t as easy to do as the zip line, and in fact, I’m still working on it, but compared to earlier in the year, it’s significantly easier.

Looking ahead to 2017, I hope for the zip line—smooth, easy and fun. But I’ve made it through the obstacle course, and while I never want to go through that again, I recognize it’s not impossible and there is, eventually, an end.

Wishing everyone a 2017 filled with love, laughter, health and zip lines!


  1. What a great comparison, Jen,
    I hope your writing time is a zip line.
    I'm getting faster--most days I don't feel like i'm slogging through quicksand.

    1. That's great, Ana! Being able to easily access what you want to say is a huge accomplishment.

  2. I love this comparison.

    In real life, I've never done an obstacle course, but had a blast zip lining (which I thought I'd be scared to death to do) at a friend's adventure ranch.

    I'm seconding that writing will be like zip lining in 2017! Smooth and easy...

    1. Never, ever again re: the obstacle course. I'd love to do a bigger zip line though.

  3. Great analogy!
    For me, writing the first draft is the obstacle course, while revising, editing, polishing and tweaking is like the zip line. Wheeee!