There are many great organizations committed to helping kids be the best they can be ie: Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, Key Clubs, Athletics, etc. I just happen to bleed green, so I’m going to use what I know to help you get the most out of Seekerville’s first ever Speedbo : )
When I was the Organizational Leader for our 4-H club, I would welcome everyone back at our October meeting for another great year of fun, learning and leadership. My opening line?
Your 4-H Experience Is What You Make It.
In 4-H, you can sit back, choose a project, do the minimum amount and receive minimum reward, and still complete another year of participation. OR, you can choose a category you have an avid interest in, do the research via computer, project leaders, community involvement and learn the basic building blocks of the project so that you can build on it each year.
In developing your writing career, you can attend your chapter meetings, scribble down some notes, finish your cup of coffee (or tea, or soda) and then hurry off to your next appointment and still call yourself a writer. OR, you can research the topic of the month and come prepared to the meeting, ready to participate, encourage others and make friends and contacts that might be able to help you with roadblocks you’re experiencing in your plot, characters, etc. and leave the meeting feeling energized and ready to tackle the next chapter of your work by putting words - words - words down on paper (or hard drive).
In 4-H, you can participate in the required demonstrations, judging projects, field trips and complete your record book as you prepare for the final judging. OR, you can register for speech/demonstration competitions that allow you to participate in levels above the county, join judging teams that compete around the state and perhaps get nominated to go to a national event, reach higher and farther and get noticed not just by your project leader, but due to your efforts, your name is recognized by staff and professors at the land grant university sponsoring the Federal 4-H program.
As your writing prowess increases, you can try and participate regularly in a critique group of 10 members so you get a variety of opinions, attend a workshop or local conference to get reacquainted with old friends, sit up front at the local meeting where the speaker is talking about the W method of plotting because it is rumored that the key to success.
OR, you can choose a few close writer friends whose level of dedication is similar to yours, who want the best for you and expect you to return the favor when you share your work, scout out online classes offered by a myriad of RWA chapters on every conceivable topic of writing and participate in the exercises and share your growth, volunteer to judge contests, help at conferences, get to know writers on a level beyond your own so that you grow and stretch to achieve new skills that press you toward your goal.
And that goal? Writing -- writing -- writing.
In 4-H, you can get swept along with the activities your club undertakes as a whole and always remain one in a crowd, OR you can run for a Club office, or a Council office, or a District, maybe even State position that teaches you leadership and responsibility, attend District, State and National conferences where you meet people with similar interests and make lifelong friends, compile all your efforts over the years into a resume that earns you a second look when being considered for scholarships, grants and internships.
As far as writing goes, apply everything I just mentioned about 4-H to your writing career and you’ll have a well-rounded, well-researched, well-connected resume to present to the editorial board of a publishing house that might be considering your work along with a few others. Maybe you made a connection at a conference, or wrote a post for a blog that caught an editor’s interest, or continually offer yourself to others who are in need of the very skills you now possess due to your diligence. You never know what tips the scale in your favor, but as Pammy’s tortoise pointed out on Monday, you’ve got to have a “T” for tenacious somewhere in your repertoire.
The moral of this story as we draw close to the end of Seekerville’s very first Speedbo?
You reap what you sow.
Now look at your progress over our month of Speedbo. I’ll be the first to admit my goals were a bit higher than I could attain. Things fell into my lap that I hadn’t anticipated. BUT, does that mean I’m going take down the word count widget on my blog because I’m dismally embarrassed over my progress? NO. I’ve just adjusted the timeline : ).
How about the camaraderie that has developed over the last month here in Seekerville? Folks are sharing insights and word counts. Words of wisdom and encouragement have been flying through the comments each and every day. We are stretching and growing, AND we’re helping each other stretch and grow.
Isn’t that just great?
I loved helping young people realize their full potential. I had a chance to encourage and yes, nag during my years as Org Leader. Now, you lucky folks, I no longer have a club to pester, so YOU get me, LOL!
Share something you’ve learned or discovered or mastered, or anything that pushed you beyond your comfort zone this month and you’ll be entered in a drawing for a copy of Robert’s Rules of Writing (4-H is big on Robert’s Rules of Order, ya know.)and a $10 Amazon gift card.
We've got a bounty of energizing food covering out buffet table. How about fresh berries and pineapple to go with the whole grain pancakes and waffles (remember what Sandra told us about energy!!) My favorite banana muffins and zucchini muffins, and a morning selection of fresh juices.
I brought a wonderful Southern Pecan blend coffee to share. Nice and strong. We're in the home stretch of Speedbo...can't fall asleep at the wheel now!!
Go Speedbo!! YAYAYAY!
Today is another day of our March Speedbo. Find out more about Speedbo and our exciting weekly prizes here. Comment today for a chance to win! Winners announced in the Weekend Edition.