As I have may have mentioned, I am a huge motorsports fan. I love all types of racing, but especially F1 and IndyCar. May just happens to hold the two greatest race for each series, the Grand Prix of Monaco and the Indy 500. While each series respectively hosts a bevy of other races, all of which are exciting, enthralling, and heart hammering, these two races are the rock on which the series are built on. They have the history, the heart, and the excitement that breathes life to the series they host.
The Indy 500, traditionally spanned the entire month of May, with qualifying occurring over several weekends until the race on Memorial Day. Now, however, it has been shortened to two weekends (due to cost) and while not quite the same, still holds a plethora of exciting story lines and more drama than any writer could hope to reproduce. Monaco, while occurring only over the space of one weekend, is no different. Emotions run high, it is a fabulous and exotic destination filled with fabulous and exotic cars, drivers, and fans. It is a race like no other and from the moment the first car rolls onto the track for practice, your heart is in your throat and the excitement begins.
Races, no matter what the series, are exciting. Passions run high, equipment, teams, and drivers are put to the test under the most strenuous of circumstances. Qualifying, however, is often overlooked in terms of attention, by most, but for race fans that is as exciting, if not more so than the actual race. The teams are out there, working, tweaking, pushing the limit at speeds that may or may not but obtained during the race when traffic abounds and accidents, and incidents, are more likely to happen. Qualifying, and practice, are where they put it together, tweak it, push it, find what works and what doesn't. It's the rough draft before the finished product put forth in the race.
As a writer, I find that I spend a lot of time qualifying. There is the initial writing, the actual building of my work, just as they build and put together the race car. There is the tweaking, the re-writing of practice for me. The polishing of the words, the reading out loud of passages, the removal or addition of pieces of the story, characters, even entire chapters. There is the qualifying, which for me is a two step process and one in which I am in, in some manner, even when actually racing.
Perhaps I should explain that. Qualifying, for me, is trying to get a publisher, or even getting the book prepared to self publish. It is that time when it is not out there for readers (which is really racing!) but when the editing, or practice, is done. It is a heart grabbing, stressful, wonderful, exciting time, and a tremendous amount of work. However, when I am sitting on pole, so to speak, and my books are either picked up by a publisher or doing well selling as they are (this is the part where I am already racing since two of my books are already available) then it is all worth it. I have qualified well and am ready to race. Then I can roll my work out, just as the teams do race day, and get ready to run.