Remember this post? I made a plan, and life laughed in my face. This is why I’m not a planner. Nothing ever goes according to plan. For much of 2013 I wrestled with the pull to pursue a passion that doesn’t pay the bills and takes me from my kids and husband. I sat down to write and dirty dishes mocked me from the sink, dust bunnies marched at my feet, echos of my children’s laughter rang throughout the house, making me keenly aware of what I was missing. What was I doing? Wasting time, that’s what. Or so I convinced myself over and over. It was paralyzing, suffocating, stifling.
And then I stumbled upon My 500 Words 31-day writing challenge where the objective is to develop a regular writing habit by committing to write 500 words every day.
“This is all writing really is: showing up. Not worrying about the outcome, just honoring the process.”
I know this, of course. We all know that in order to accomplish anything you first need to show up. But when the only person holding you accountable is you, it becomes so much easier to not show up.
I think the challenge technically began on January 1st, but I didn’t let that stop me (nor should you). I decided to begin yesterday, and so I did. I showed up. I wrote 500 words, which is nothing. It’s a blip on the vast canvas set before me. But to think that it’s nothing would be to take two steps back. It is something. There are words where there weren’t before. They’re not perfect words, maybe not even the right words, but they’re there and the story is moving (inching) forward. That’s something. Truthfully, I could have written more. I wanted to write more. I wanted to burrow into the story for the remainder of my day and get lost but I couldn’t, which is why this writing challenge is a perfect fit for me.
So 2014 is about bidding adieu to my inner bully and chipping away at this goal. I can’t set a time-frame for a first draft – not yet anyway. All I can do is show up and write, no matter if it’s 5 minutes or three hours.
You can read more about the 500 Words a Day challenge here.