Something really exciting happened to me this week! In my last post, I wrote about training and completing my first half marathon as a mother runner and the parallels I saw in my journey as a writer. I wrote a little article about my experience and took a chance and submitted it to Runner’s World. AND THEY ACCEPTED IT! It went live two days ago. You can read it here.
As I have said before, I’m new on the writing journey. Even though I have had several guest posts, this was the first one where I was asked questions, to incorporate more detail, and submit edits. Together, the editor and I worked together to create a piece that was what the Runner’s World audience was used to consuming and was still T.S. Reiger. I was thrilled to see how RW kept my tone, my voice, and my story, but helped me trim down the fluff to deliver something crisp and concise:
I am a mother runner. It’s a title I acquired after my son was born earlier this year. I have always run short distances off and on throughout my life as part of an exercise routine. In 2013, I kicked my running up a notch and ran my first half marathon that fall. I even followed the training plan two more times in 2014.
Like many women, I have battled my weight since adolescence. I have been on a yo-yo rollercoaster of the same 40 pounds as long as I can remember. Since high school, I have always run short distances as part of an exercise routine. In the fall 2013, I was a PhD student and needed a goal to keep me accountable and committed to fitness to combat my sedentary lifestyle. I kicked my running habits up a notch and decided to train for my first half marathon at Purdue University, where I was attending graduate school. I was a complete novice and tried running at a pace above what I had trained. Of course, I burned out around mile 8 and ended up finishing with a pace that was a minute slower than what I had trained for. I didn’t register for races in 2014, but I still followed Hal Higdon’s training plan two more times just to stay in shape.
Like many women, I’ve battled weight since adolescence, so I’ve run short distances for exercise ever since high school. But in the fall of 2013 I kicked my running up a notch. I was a PhD student at Purdue University, and extremely sedentary. I desperately needed a goal to help stay fit, so I decided to train for a half marathon. Though I didn’t quite run as fast as I’d hoped, I enjoyed it enough to run two more halves in the following years.
What happened here was GREAT! Some people might resist changes, but I loved seeing what details were needed in order to still allow the entire story. I felt like I was too cautious and stringent in the first draft because I was intimidated to write for such a large publication. It shows because you can see the missing holes in my first submission. With the second, I was answering questions from the editor and more of my voice comes through. However, it’s too lengthy and has unnecessary description. The final cut is a nice balance between the two that provides readers with what they need and allows T.S. Reiger to shine through.