Writing every day means you will always have something to write about.
I’ve patted myself on the back pretty good over the past few weeks. My output hasn’t been this great since I was a teenager.
In those days, I carried around my zippercase – a plastic binder that could be sealed shut with a zipper. I loaded reams of three hole punched lined paper into that thing and I would write all the time. This is not an exaggeration. All the time. Some of it – hell, let’s not mince words – most of it was typical teenage angst that grew into adult anger issues when I turned twenty and then it just went away, dwindling until it was a few hundred words written every day about whatever hit my fancy, notes on what was going on in my head.
About six weeks ago, Facebook and the Writers Community of Your Region ‘conspired’ to get my attention – a mini National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo for those of you are cool like me). You didn’t have to write a novel, just make a commitment to write every day for the month of June, to commemorate Canada’s 150th birthday.
“What’s the worst that could happen?”
Well, I didn’t write every day – the month was not that kind – but I did hit my target of averaging 500 words a day. And I felt great. I imagine this is what normal people feel like when they exercise and start to feel fit. I didn’t want it to end. I found myself checking Facebook every day to see how everyone was doing, to offer encouragement, to see what else was going on that I could be part of. I made a friend and I created a shared folder on my OneDrive account and got to read some seriously good prose. Prose that I could never write. Prose that would exhaust me if I kept up that level of skill. Everything was so amazing, but June was coming to a close and it was going to be over.
“It can’t end,” I thought.
Then the moderator of the WCYR NaNoWriMo Facebook page (is it just me, or is that a mouthful?) took the trouble to make the page not just for the month of June but to make monthly commitments for writing – you make your ‘pledge’ at the start of the month and then post as you see fit. And then I’m write (sic) back at it.
For the past few days, though, I’ve managed over 2000 words a day. I feel like a rockstar. I have to make a conscious choice to stop and walk away or I get lost in it all. Where is all of it coming from? It’s made up from old story ideas and snippets and thoughts collected over the past thirty years or so – that notion of having been at this for most of my life is daunting and I will leave it be for now.
Even today, I wanted to sit and make notes on what I wanted to write for the next 10 000 words or so and I caught myself slipping back into writing mode. That’s when it struck me – the reason I have something to write about is because I wrote every day for the past thirty years.
“Hey, you know what. I think I’ll post this to WordPress.”
So I did, if only to tell the 11 fine people that follow me to keep writing every day. And if you aren’t, then today’s a good day to start.