The Big Dance

Folks at my office are all decked out in their Phillies red today, and it’s wicked cool.  Everybody’s excited beyond words for tonight’s game.  Being a born-and-raised Yankees fan but an adopted Phillies fan, I’m used to late October baseball but nothing like this.  There’s an energy in the air I can’t begin to describe.  All I can think is that this must be what it’s like when you’re going to the Prom. 

At the same time, I’m starting to get excited because the NJ Romance Writers conference starts on Friday and “Release Point” is a finalist in their Put Your Heart in a Book contest.  I’m told that they read excerpts from the finalist entries for the entire crowd (200+, I’m estimating) to hear.  My fingers, toes, eyes and intestines are all crossed that there will be editors in the audience who hear “Release Point” and fall madly in love.  I have a pitch session with an editor on Saturday afternoon.  Laura and I are getting to NJ early so we can raid…uh, browse AC Moore.  We’re staying late on Sunday to have a plotting session with Robin Kaye and Robin Lanier.  Instead of just a few hours with the girls, I’m getting 3 whole days to talk writing and publishing with my favorite people (that I’m not biologically or maritally connected to).  I’ve already laid out what I plan to wear.  And beneath it all, I’m scared spitless because I’m one of 3 finalists in the PYHIAB contest, and I have a 1 in 3 chance of winning, which would mean going up on that stage and accepting a plaque and saying “Thank You” in front of the entire room.  It means being told I’m the best at something.  (And doesn’t that concept scramble my neurons!)

I find it an interesting parallel that the Phillies are going to the Series and I’m up for a writing award at pretty much the same time.  In both cases, it’s a dream that started WAY long ago, to be recognized to be among the best in one’s field.  In both cases, just getting the pennant (or being a finalist) is a huge honor.  In both cases, we’re up against highly qualified opponents.  In both cases, should a win occur, there will be voluminous celebrations going on.  (In my case, if I lose, there’ll be even more drinking going on.)  I wonder if the Phillies are as nervous as I am.  At the same time, I’m not sure who I’m more nervous for, the Phillies or me.  🙂

I’m leaving early on Friday and I doubt, between the Series tonight and my nerves tomorrow, that I’ll be coherent enough to post anything between now and the awards ceremony, so please, wish us both luck.  If I don’t win, I think I’ll be fine with that, so long as the Phillies come home with the World Series trophy.  It’s been a long, wonderful, exciting ride for all of us, and be it my finaling or their NL Pennant, that’s an honor that nothing can ever erase.

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