Watching the Winter Olympics has made me rather uncomfortably aware of something about myself:
I’m a raging wimp.
I look at all those crazy things these people are doing — zooming down a mountain with boards strapped to their feet, sliding down an icy tube at high speeds on a sled, letting a person throw them in the air over ice, doing huge flips in the air — and my response is a big, huge, NOPE. About the only thing that looks like it might be fun is the cross-country skiing, and maybe some of the ice dancing — the parts that are more like ballroom dancing but not the parts where someone picks you up and spins you around.
Sometimes, it’s even hard for me to watch other people do it. I’ve never been much of a thrillseeker. I don’t like roller coasters or any kind of amusement park ride that includes a big vertical drop. I don’t like scary movies. I don’t like haunted houses. I don’t even like driving fast.
Which probably means that my occupation of sitting at home and writing about people having adventures is perfect for me, except that sometimes I even have to force myself to put my characters in jeopardy. I keep having to remind myself that a story needs tension and conflict.
Heck, even with books I’m reading, there are times when I have to flip to the end to make sure a character is going to be okay when things get a bit too tense.
I have done some scary things in my life. I’ve gone whitewater rafting (on an Olympic course!). Singing in public is actually scarier to me than that, and I do that all the time. Public speaking is supposedly the biggest fear, and that doesn’t bother me at all. I travel alone, even to foreign countries. I got into some hairy situations in my TV news days and was praised even by cops for keeping a cool head. I write down my daydreams and share them with the world.
So maybe I’m not such a wimp. I guess I just don’t go looking for thrills. I don’t court danger, but I do take other kinds of risks.