Archives for : 2012

The world didn’t end … Now what?

Whenever one year ends, blogs are filled with posts about the past and what they’ve learned over the past 12 months. Posts filled with contemplative thoughts about their journey thus far and what they’ve learned during the past 360-ish days.

I’ve done that kind of post before, and while this will be a bit contemplative over the soon to be dearly departed 2012, I’m also going to focus on the future – the wide-open space of 2013.

The past year has been a wild one. I moved to a small town in Canada for my new job and learned some new writing skills to go along with it, I also travelled across North America to find stories for it. My job then changed, and I along with it. I also became rather ill, but got better in time to spend some time with my new niece.

I went to a science conference as a moderator of a session and met a large number of people who reminded me of why I got into writing in the first place and are a constant inspiration to improve my craft.

There was a girl (but isn’t there always?), but like all good things, it came to an end far too soon.  I also got an article published in a book of the best science writing of the year and spent more time writing my novel “The Black.”

Oh, and I grew a goatee and moustache for Movember and decided to keep it after asking my blog readers and friends on Twitter what I should do.

But what about 2013?

Well, I will be attending that same science conference as a moderator again (this time about first-person narrative storytelling) and could not be more excited. For something at the end of January, I already expect that it will be one of the highlights of the year.

But I am also working on something – a new project.

In the new year, I will give more details, but for now: it’s about science communicated simply. It will utilize video and has an artistic component. Obviously, the artistic component is one that I will need help with, as my illustration capabilities are only slightly above stick-figures. If you know of any artists or illustrators that would be interested in helping me with this neat little project and would like more information, please have them contact me either via Twitter (@davidmanly), the comments section below or by email.

I will have another post about the project in the next week or so, but I’d be happy to discuss this with any artists or illustrators interested before then.

Hope you all have a very safe and happy new year!

All that glitters is not gold

It’s that time of the year again, where nations come together and watch the Olympics!!!

Or, to be more honest, people watch expert athletes while sitting on their couches wishing they could be as good as the Olympians are. Or whatever you prefer to believe 😉

I absolutely love the Olympics and try to watch ever single event that I can, even though I am not h biggest sport fan during the year. But, for some reason, every 2 years, I become a sport fanatic and just absorb everything.

It has gotten to the point where I tape two different channels during their prime-time coverage, while watching a third, to make sure I do not miss a single event. Add that to online coverage, I think I’m set for the next two weeks.

But recently, I started thinking about why that is.
Why am I so engrossed in the Olympics (both winter and summer)?

I think it is because it shows people at their best.

Every single person on the planet says saying like, “just do your best,” “you tried your hardest” and “you just didn’t want it enough” – which is akin to saying that an individual was not good enough. But these athletes from all over the world? THEY are the best.

And from that pool, the three greatest champions emerge and stand on the podium.

However, getting just behind the podium is thought of, in the public forum, as a disappointment and a failure. But the truth is that it is anything but.

Take the Canadian women’s Olympic team in athletics.

Two days ago, they qualified for the team finals, which was beyond their wildest expectations. Their reactions to being one of the Top Eight to compete in the finals was simply pure joy. And how did they do?

According to CTV, Canada came in 5th, behind the U.S., Russia, Romania and China, but ahead of Britain, Italy and Japan. They were not even close to the podium, but it. Did. Not. Matter.

It was the team’s first appearance in the team final since 1984 and was simply happy to be named fifth best in the world. And that is what people need to remember, as well as the athletes – just because you aren’t first, second or third, it does not mean you are a loser.

Being fifth, 12th, 38th or 75th out of everyone who plays the sport in the world is still pretty DAMN GOOD. And while it may not come with a medal, you are still a winner.

You are still better at what you do than everyone I know, did know or ever will know.

So, congratulations to all Olympians, whether they are on the podium or at the bottom of the scoreboard