By guest blogger Marilyn Agee
Please help me welcome one of my students from the Ace Your 10K Day! online course, Marilyn, with her amazing 10K Day experience. ~ Milli
I’ve had a book about my dog, Mikey, in my head for a long time. When I was in Milli’s coffeehouse workshop, writing from her story prompts, I began to gear all my stories around my remembrances of Mikey, who is no longer with us. This creative writing gave me a lot of preparation for the 10K day.
When the day finally came, I couldn’t write fast enough! The stories were all in my head and all I had to do was type. That was back in June 2009, at my very first 10K Day. So that day I was successful, reaching 10,174 words. Never to achieve 10,000 words again.
Milli’s online course prepared me for my April 2012 10K experience. I knew what I wanted to do. I had let Mikey’s book rest for over a year—but, inspired by the course assignments, and having mentoring and direction from Milli as part of the course, I decided to work on the Mikey Dog book again.
I went back to my original table of contents. I re-read some of the old stories and decided to re-write some of them and I still had a few chapters left. I did pretty well that day but it was coming to the end of the day and I only had around 8,000 words. I was feeling pretty tired at this point. I had gotten a late start that day and it was 5:30, which meant it was time to feed all my animals. I didn’t really feel like writing any more and, in fact, told the 10K group on the check-in page at the Fear of Writing blog that I would probably bag it for the evening.
I was walking up to my barn to feed my horses when I remembered something Milli had said to me earlier. “Call on the spirit of Mikey Dog!” So I did. And suddenly it was as if he was right there walking up to the barn with me. I felt tears in my eyes just knowing he was there with me.
These triggering questions came to me: What did he mean to me in my life? How did he make my life better? What did he give me that made such an imprint?
In my tired state I found new strength and went back to my desk to write.
I remembered a childhood dog and some of the similarities he and Mikey had. I began to open up and write from my gut. Here’s part of my final report from that 10K day:
10,040, baby! I had a great night’s sleep and feel like a weight has lifted. Guess I had some emotional baggage to get rid of.
What can I say? I was too close to quit and I think the spirit of Mikey Dog was following me back from the barn. Suddenly I went off in a crazy direction and my fingers blazed. I did have a ton of typos and if I spelled a word that was unrecognizable I wrote it over again until I could make out some part of the word. So that raised my word count. But the memories and the story line came in like a flood. Maybe a little exhaustion kicks in the right brain. And a martini didn’t hurt to open an emotionally locked dam.
Fun project, Milli! I’m so glad I did this and I can’t imagine doing this course without your mentoring. So helpful.
After taking Milli’s Ace Your 10K Day! course I feel I’m so much better equipped to take part in this monthly event. I highly recommend it! Even if you don’t care about writing 10,000 words in one day, it’s a course that will spur your imagination. It was surprisingly a lot more fun than I was expecting. I thought it would be more like “work.”
I was born and raised in Texas and I live in the Texas Hill Country. We have three horses, three dogs and three cats. I am a retired interior designer and have a constant need for creative outlets. I have one book published, an anthology written by myself and five others. We all belong to Milli’s writing workshop and meet every Tuesday morning in a coffee shop. We decided to compile our short stories, mostly written from Milli’s creative prompts, and self publish Percolations: Musings From a Texas Hill Country Coffee Shop. I’m also submitting short stories to be published in e-books for a group of like-minded horse people called The Writing Stable.