Friday, March 7, 2014

I want to be my own hero

by Maria Geraci

I'm sure I'm not the only person who watched Matthew McConaughey's speech at the Oscars last Sunday and thought Wow. And not because Matthew is looking good again (as opposed to how he looked in Dallas Buyer's Club--a very fine film, btw). But because his speech was just so damn inspiring.

In case you missed it, he told us about the 3 things he needs every day.

1. Something to look up to
2. Something to look forward to
3. Someone to Chase

Like a lot of people in the TV audience, I was touched by his first 2 responses. He looks up to God. And he looks forward to his family. Can't argue with that. But it was his answer to his 3rd need that made me sit up and spill the popcorn.

Who does Matthew McConaughey chase? Who's his hero? His hero is him. Ten years from now. 
"My hero's always going to be me 10 years away."

He went to explain that he doesn't expect to ever catch up to what his idea of his own self should be, but that it's a goal he aspires to. It's what he chases.

He then ended his speech with a rousing "Alright, alright, alright." And a room full of laughter and applause.

Despite the ridiculously late hour, my brain immediately went into overtime. Hey, I thought, I want to my own hero too! And I began to think back to the me I was 10 years ago, when I'd just barely finished my first manuscript and was toying with the idea that maybe one day I could really be published.

Fast forward those 10 years. I have 4 published novels and my last one was nominated for a RITA, Romance Writer's of America's highest award. I've achieved things that the pragmatic part of me wouldn't have thought possible.

But am I satisfied with my writing career today?

 No. I'm not. And I shouldn't be.

Because although I've achieved some really good stuff, I should want more. I want to be a better writer. A more successful writer (because there's nothing wrong with that) and yes, I'm not ashamed to admit that I'd love to be a New York Times best seller. I want to be able to quit the day job and write full time. I want to give back more to the writing community that has given so much to me.

In the words of Matthew McConaughey, I want to my own hero in 10 years. I want to chase myself. The me I know I can be if I work hard and stay steady.

Who do you want to be in 10 years?

Maria Geraci writes fun, romantic women's fiction. You can visit her website at


  1. What a great post, Maria! Yes, I had the same reaction to Sunday's Oscar speech. Perhaps Mr. McConaughey should consider motivational speaking. :-) It did give me pause and make me say, "Yeah... wait... I can do even better!"

    1. Thanks, Laura. I actually had trouble sleeping, I was so inspired! I wanted to stay up and write!

  2. Maria, that was a great post. I missed his speech and am glad you repeated the main points. I am amazed and proud of you, and think you will achieve your next ten year goal as well.
    Keep on plugging!

  3. Fun post, Maria. I didn't see his speech, but love the ideas. It's also nice to think that we are always in the process of becoming our best selves.

    1. Thanks, Samantha. I'm always searching for inspiration. Sometimes you find it in the oddest places :)

  4. Maria,
    I enjoyed his speech as well and, like you, was surprised by his choice of #3 when he said it. He has such a unique outlook on the world, and I found myself thinking back 10 years (imagining how amazed my younger self would have been by the changes in my career over this past decade) and, also, trying to look ahead and project what could be possible a decade from now... There's a sense of responsibility, too, knowing how much work needs to go into achieving any dream, and it's a little daunting, LOL. But I was inspired by his thoughts -- and by yours! Thanks for the great post :).

  5. At first I thought the "being my own hero" speech was going to be a tribute to himself. How refreshing that it was actually a lesson in both humility and perseverance. Chasing myself in the future is far better than mourning myself in the past.