Have you ever heard of NaNoWriMo? No? You just missed it. It’s National Novel Writing Month and it happens in November. I’ve never participated, and I doubt I ever will. I don’t think it’s a bad thing. I’m just not going to do it.
Have you ever heard of the internet? And Google? Yes? These are bad things. Google delights in confirming that you have no original ideas. I thought I had this creative play on NaNoWriMo by coming up with NaBloPoMo, National Blog Posting Month, and then I find people already using my word.
Although, before uncovering that, I had already changed to LoBloPoMo, Local Blog Posting Month, because it was just me and I wasn’t going to claim some big national thing. And someone’s already used that, too. For “Low Blog Posting Month.”
“There is no new thing under the sun.”
Fine. I don’t need some dumb name to label my plan.
This all started because I was looking at my posting history and thinking about how the stream has dried up since “Content Generator” last week. I haven’t “generated new content” since then.
I put a book together and wrote stuff in support of it, but that doesn’t count. That’s part of the job, but not part of The Work. The “work” is to keep writing new stuff. To set aside the fear and anxiety, and try to tell the truth.
Oh, but I was sick. Nothing excruciatingly critical, but pretty sick for me. I usually don’t get very sick. I’ve had the muzziness, several crappy nights (not literally), and I’m still getting over it. And that’s… such a horseshit excuse, of course.
I suck equally well at following my dreams when I’m healthy.
That’s what I’ve been doing the past couple of months, and better than my usual attempts, I think. Following the dream. Writing, and getting glimpses of how it can be good. Not that the finished writing is so great, but that the doing of the writing can be good for your soul. Yet now I have the familiar feeling of letting things slip.
Martin Sexton has this great live version of “Black Sheep” where he ad libs about angels and dreams, saying, “You told me that my dreams are right outside the door / All I gotta do is learn to chase it / Maybe even one day let her in.” And it’s such a powerful part of the song; I can feel those dreams at the door.
All I gotta do is learn to chase them.
That means I have to write. And keep writing. I’m good at starting a writing program, but then there is always a problem with persistence. As an exercise, I’m going to try writing every day this month. I’m still walking around with Seth Godin’s post in my head, the one about writing every single day. I had been thinking I wasn’t “ready” for that pace. That I wouldn’t have that much to write about, or have enough time to let things develop and edit them appropriately, and that you—the patient reader of this blog—wouldn’t benefit that much from it. But it’s a bigger problem — at least for me — if I let things dry up again.
So I’m going to do it. I’ll try not to worry too much about you; you’re free to skim or skip posts or unsubscribe altogether. You can take care of yourself. I’ll worry about me and writing the posts.
I’m thinking of 300 words as a minimum for each post, although I won’t hold myself to it. I’m not even going to hold myself to the every day thing. When I was looking at my posting numbers, it occurred to me that 26 posts would put me at an even 400 for the life of the blog, and well into the 50s for the year, which is on pace with the past few years. Back in September, I was planning to write more but I didn’t think I’d make it to 50 posts. If I can write 26 entries this month, the cold, numerical, goal setting part of me will be satisfied.
But I’ll try for every day.
And here we go.
One down, thirty to go.