Friday, October 25, 2013

10,000 Hours

According to the book Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell, it takes 10,000 hours of practice to become an expert at something.
I was thinking about this as I was writing the other day. I was mentally comparing myself to some of my favorite authors and coming up short. Then I realized I'm still working on my 10,000 hours. I'm not an expert and shouldn't compare myself and my one debut novel to authors I've been reading for fifteen years!
10,000 hours is a long time. (It's over 416 complete days in case you're wondering.) To continue doing something for that many hours requires determination and a passion for the craft.
There are many things I've tried that I've given up on well before my 10,000 hour mark. One of those is quilting. I love quilts. I love them as throws and as a nighttime blanket. I wanted to make one for so long, so I took a beginning class. I survived the class, but I learned my passion for quilts is limited to that of a consumer, not producer.
What's something you enjoy doing enough that you're willing to struggle for 10,000 hours to learn to do well? Do you think it takes that long to truly become an expert?
Me and my first and only quilt
Laura Jackson loves Jesus, books, trees and cupcakes. Her debut YA novel Worth the Wait releases February 4, 2014. Find her at


  1. Congratulations on your debut novel, Laura. That's wonderful!

    When I think of 10,000 hours I think of two things I've done a lot through the years - writing and knitting. :)

    P.S. I can quilt too. I've done one lap quilt and several hot pad size ones. :)

  2. That's awesome you can quilt! I may try it again. I think there were too many people in the class, and I needed more help.

  3. For a first quilt, it looks impressive. Thank you for sharing.

  4. Hi Laura, Congrats on your new book.

    I made a baby quilt for my granddaughter. That'll be my only one. Maybe it's because I'm getting old, but 10,000 hours doesn't sound like too much to me. Over the years I've probably logged that many in both writing and crocheting, two things I'll keep doing until I go on to Glory.

  5. Thanks, Andrea!
    Elaine, I guess when you break down 10,000 hours over 30, 40 years, it doesn't sound too bad. :) I'll keep writing then....

  6. 10,000 hours sounds like a long time. Guess I'll keep plugging away at the things I want to perfect in my life. Eventually I'll get there.

    1. Don't ever give up! You can do all things through Christ who gives you strength!