Tag Archives: kata

Practice Makes Perfect

Thanks Melinda, for that fabulous introduction! And thank you Rayna, Melinda and Kathy for inviting me to blog along with you on Attacking The Page.  I must admit I struggled with what I would post for my first blog until Kathy said, just be yourself and you’ll be fine. So here goes…

The other night, after karate class, I spoke to a fellow student who mentioned that when he performs a Kata, a series of karate moves, before the teachers in our dojo, he’s never frightened. Wow. Admiration for his self-assurance and poise raced through me. I told myself what I’ve found countless times to be true: practice makes perfect. The karate student I spoke to has been studying longer, so naturally, his skills are more advanced.

On my drive home, I considered how dedication and perseverance not only allow me to trust myself as a writer, but push myself in karate training. These qualities are what keep me going. But this was the clincher for me: assurance and poise are the qualities that have helped me find my true writing ‘voice’, and I never realized they’d been in my artillery all along. For me, it was an Oprah, ah ha moment. So I sat back and smiled, knowing that in time, assurance and poise will enter the dojo with me. Until then, I will continue to work hard, and remind myself that everyone learns at their own pace. My Sensei told me, if karate was easy, everyone would be taking class. How true. The same can be said for the publishing world. If writing a good book were an easy task, everyone would be published.

In 2004, I started my writing journey. After publishing a children’s non-fiction book, library sales dropped, so I turned to writing romance and I haven’t looked back. In 2011, I began studying Issinryu Karate, and one year later, I feel empowered and confident. I believe practice does make perfect, and although our journeys are diverse, and may spread over different spans of time, odds are, just like me, you have qualities you aren’t aware of, and your Oprah, ah ha moment, is waiting for you too if you trust in yourself and look deep inside.

Because I’m a vertically challenged woman, on a good day I’m five feet tall, I began karate as a means of self-defense so I would feel safe whenever and wherever life took me. It’s turned out to be one of the best decisions I ever made. One year ago, fear would have riddled me helpless if someone approached me in a dark venue with the intention of hurting me. Now, I’m tenacious and self-assured, and God help the man waiting for me in some dark, parking lot…because I guarantee he’ll be the one running for help, not me.


Happy New Year!

My husband and Me on the slope

After the crazy fun of Christmas part 1, 2 and 3 and a great week skiing with my family and friends (there were 16 of us!), I hardly had time to think about my goals for 2011.  But finally, after giving some thought I wanted to share them with you.  I figure I’ll be more accountable if I publicly state my goals.

At first, I came up with three goals:

1) Get published

2) Learn the last 3 Isshinryu weapons kata

3) Lose fat and gain muscle

Unfortunately, I realized those weren’t good goals.  Why?  Because they aren’t precise, measurable, or realistic.  Especially when the success of the first two are contingent on other people.  I have no control whether or not editors and publishers will love my story and feel it is marketable just as I have no control over how many weapon katas (karate forms) my sensei feels I am ready to learn.

So after a little more thought, I came up with some precise, measurable and attainable goals that will hopefully set me up for success in 2011.

1)  Write five days a week.  Every week. Even if it is only a sentence.  Blogging doesn’t count.  Only novel writing counts.  The more I write, the better I’ll become and the more finished novels I’ll have to give to my agent to shop.  This increases my chances of getting published.  By not giving myself a daily word count to reach, I feel that this goal is attainable.

2) Practice all my katas three times a week. I wanted to go for everyday, but didn’t think that sounded realistic.  If I missed a day, I’d be angry with myself and give up.  By practicing, my sensei will see my proficiency and confidence and know I’m ready to move to the next kata.

3) Increase my exercise regimen with running and P90X. While, I’m not sure how much running I can do over the cold winter months (I much rather run in warmer weather), I do have a measurable goal for the P90X.  My husband and I will be starting it tonight after work.  This is a daily exercise program that continues for 90 days.  I have done it before for about 40 days and then life got in the way.  This year the goal is to reach the full 90.

So there you have it.  I hope you can help keep me accountable.  And if you’d like to share your goals (remember precise, realistic, and measurable) in the comments section, I can help keep you accountable too.

Have a Safe, Healthy, and Prosperous New Year!!

~K.M. Fawcett