by Harriet Hale
I’m a late convert, but I love the movie The 13th Warrior. One of my favorite characters is Herger the Joyous. He’s probably everyone’s favorite. Big smile, sage wisdom, tough guy, great accent … Herger’s fairly awesome.
Of all the quotes that stick with me, there’s a specific one I love. “The All-Father wove the skein of your life a long time ago. Go and hide in a hole if you wish, but you won’t live one instant longer. Your fate is fixed.”
Right now, that applies to my thoughts about writing. It feels like the publishing All-Father has woven my skein and my fate is fixed.
Herger and the other 12 warriors saw their lives in two paths: fight, because you’ll either live or die and it’s not up to you; or hide, and die anyway. They chose to fight.
I’m choosing to hide in a hole for a little while. I’m tired of trying to rip up the skein and re-sew it and, unlike Herger, I can’t be resigned to it or happy about it.
But I won’t hide forever, and I’ll make the best of my time in the hole. Because for every “no,” there’s a “maybe.” For every family member who derides you for trying, there’s a friend who encourages you. For every supposedly well-meaning person who wants to know “how you’re doing,” there are a few actually mean it. And because sometimes you have to step back and take the time to turn your clunky Viking sword into a scimitar.
As Herger says, “Fear profits a man nothing.”