Friday, December 16, 2005
One Day At A Time
For those that are checking in on me, my intervention has proven, thus far, to be a success. I gave myself a task in last week’s blog – I had to write at least one page a day. My play friends upped the ante by requiring me to post what I’ve written every day for two weeks. Accountability, as Angel has mentioned, is important.
So day 1, I sat down and despite my dry spell, wrote three pages. Day 2, I wrote two more pages. Day 3, I wrote three pages. Today is Day four and I just emailed out my “homework” including two written pages. I wouldn’t allow myself to blog until I had finished. Despite the whining, the moaning, the excuse making – I’ve cranked out 10 pages in 4 days. If I did this every day – at least one page, maybe more – how quickly would I have a book done? Certainly quicker than I do now.
2 pages a day x 150 days = 300 pages (a 75k word count!) That’s TWO books a year. That’s great! If I – or you – just wrote two pages a day, every day, we would be that much closer to making our writing dreams happen.
I think, perhaps I look too often at the successful and prolific writers who crank out a new book every two months and complain about having to cut down their stories to meet the line’s word count limit. Then I see myself, struggling to finish one book a year and praying that when I’m done writing that I’ve met the word count MINIMUM. At times the words flow, but all too often, each word can be agony to pull out of me. I can’t spend ten pages describing scenery and clothes and food like my teenage idol Bertrice Small. I don’t have the words in me. Someone told me my writing is lean. Wouldn’t you know I’m not aiming for one of the 50-60k word count lines? If I could pull a 100k Luna out of my head, I’d be thrilled.
I’m practical, though, and these past couple days have shown me something that looking to another writer can never do – I CAN write 2 pages a day. No schedule on this Earth, barring a coma or traction could keep me from 15 minutes a day. It's like exercise. I won't say I can committ to an hour of aerobics every day - I'll set myself up to fail - but 8 minute Abs three times a week? Right on! What I need is to build the writing habit and discipline. During these two weeks, I am going to build the habit. I will write every day and I will continue to write every day.
So...who out there wants to take the challenge with me? Say just one week, starting Saturday (so you'll be done by Christmas Eve craziness). 7 days...7 pages minimum. I know a lot of people have said they can't write during the holidays, but I think with the exclusion of LJ, we all need to be doing it. A page a day. Think about it. If you want to join me, email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Email me every day with the number of pages you've written and we'll have a virtual party Christmas Eve to celebrate our week of accomplishment. Then we can go into the holiday without writing guilt and enjoy ourselves knowing we are writing a book...one day at a time.