I live on the edge of the English Lake District, a National Park famed for its mountains. We've got the highest peak in England, Scafell Pike, which, at 3,210 feet isn't THAT high in the world stakes of mountains, but it's big enough for us.
I've done Scafell Pike with Dad, who's the reason both my brother and I are into fell walking (and Mum's the reason I'm into landscapes, but that's another story), and on that occasion, as on many others up mountains at home and abroad, I had to take it one step at a time.
Actually, most of the time I take mountains twenty steps at a time.
No matter how much my legs are aching, or how unfit I've managed to let myself get, I can usually manage twenty steps. Don't worry about what happens after that, I can manage the next twenty steps. And then, when I've made those twenty, and I'm stopping to catch my breath, and waiting for the spots before my eyes to disappear, I can usually manage another twenty.
Thinking about the walk ahead, all the way up past Great End, and on to Esk Hause, then up Scafell and that soul-destroying descent into Little Narrowcove before the last haul up the Pike itself, would probably make me give up then and there! I can't possibly do that much, that far, that high.
But I can do twenty steps.
And then I can probably do another twenty.
The current work-in-progress is feeling a bit like a mountain. It's over 100,000 words long already, and, I estimate, only 80% finished. It's in pieces, irrational, out of order... and fixing it seems an impossible task.
But I can do twenty steps. Some days that's twenty lines, some days it twenty pages. But I'm still climbing.
What big job do you have in hand, that you like to break down into twenty steps or so?
Don't forget to pop back on Thursday for Christina's post!