The most fun thing about E is that he pushes you past the edge - it's as if all most of us can see is a flat world and somehow he can see further. He's good at convincing other people that the world is actually round and then for those who are willing to go with him to see, he proves it over and over again.
One of his friends recently returned from a year in New Zealand and was pushing E to name the next "Big One" A big one is BIG - one of those 'things I want to achieve before I die'. The ones you can't do in an afternoon - they require commitment, training, focus and seeing past your flat world.
E's friend just put together these clips of their last Big One - summiting Mt. Aconcagua. While mountain climbing is not my big one, this video still inspires me because it all relates.
Preparation - instead of training, running, hiking, carrying packs, learning about the area, first aid, another language, mountain rescue, avalanche awareness, I need to write every day, learn the craft, revise, stay aware of the industry, stay focused. They managed to prepare while working full time jobs, keeping relationships, friendships and family ties strong and raising the funds to make the trip. Not easy.
Focusing on what you control and preparing but not worrying about what you can't. What if there's bad weather? What if the altitude gives me a cerebral edema? What if there's an avalanche? What if the market for the kind of book I'm writing bottoms out? What if I can't find an agent? What if no publisher will buy my book? Doesn't matter. Prepare the best you can and take your shot. It's the only way to get there.
My big one looms. I'm about to get much more ruthless with my time and attention. I can just see the curve beyond my flat world...