Saturday, October 27, 2012
With a little help from my friends...
Over the three plus years Crime Watch has been going, with more than 1000 posts ranging from interviews to reviews to news and opinions, I've tried to keep the blog as crime fiction-focused as possible, with only a couple of exceptions (Anzac Day and the Canterbury earthquakes).
I hope you can all forgive me for making a third exception today.
Tomorrow I am undertaking the biggest-ever physical and mental challenge of my life (thusfar): running the 2012 Adidas Auckland Marathon. 42.2 kilometres of running (26.2 miles for my imperially measuring friends). Gulp. I've been training for a few months, first walking and losing weight, and in the past couple of months, building up the running. I'm still not where I want to be long-term, but I am feeling confident that - disasters aside - I will reach the finish line tomorrow morning. It's been quite a journey already (see above).
When I signed up for the marathon earlier this year, many people thought I was crazy. Most of all me. But hey, sometimes we need to be a little crazy. At the time I also made the decision to try to raise funds for charity - if I was going to do this thing for myself, why not try to benefit others too? So I signed up to be a 'heartracer', raising funds for the official marathon charity, the Heart Foundation, hoping to raise a bit of money.
It's been said that if a dream or goal doesn't scare you, it's not big enough. I believe that's true. A marathon was a crazy 'out of the comfort zone' goal for me, as a 132kg (290lb) plus deskbound office worker who even when he'd been fit had never, ever in his entire life been a runner. So that's why I am doing it.
And that's why I set myself a big goal on the charitable fundraising too. I wanted to raise thousands of dollars, not just a little bit. Crazy, when I am no-one famous. But I knew that one thing I had to my advantage was that along life's journey I've been fortunate enough to come across so many wonderful, amazing people who I can call friends and acquaintances. Through various adventures - from high school to law school, corporate law to summer camp, world travels to writing and crime fiction, and more. Good-hearted people from all walks of life and all corners of the earth who have helped make my life so much better, in ways big and small, even if they'd never realise it.
A few dollars each from some of them would quickly add up, I realised. So here we are, one day before the marathon, and together we've raised $3,652. Wow. I am humbled and overwhelmed. Life is good.
But I want to do more. We're not that far away from a crazy, ludicrous, never-get-there goal of $100 per kilometre ($4,220). And I want to go for it. So, dear Crime Watch readers, can you help? Several people in the crime fiction community - readers, publishers, and authors - have already come on board, with more pledging to do so as we count down to tomorrow's marathon. But it would be great to have more.
I've been blessed to be involved in crime fiction, in a number of ways (blogger, awards judge, festival chair, reviewer, interviewer, and more) over the past three years. Personally, I need no further reward than the amazing times with amazing people I've already had. But since it's for charity, I'm making myself ask. Out of my comfort zone to do so, but hey, that's a good thing too. So if you can spare any change, and feel like supporting me and the Heart Foundation, I would love to have you as part of the team.
You can see my fundraising page, and donate, here.
Thanks for indulging me today. I promise we'll be back right into some great crime fiction content soon (in fact, I have some terrific interviews and features on the horizon - so watch this space).