Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Spark It Up: NaBloPoMo


Today is April 1st, and already I have been the victim of a very well-played practical joke by my friend Andrew Odom. Turns out, you can't actually believe everything you read on the internet.

I'd like to say that this is an April Fool's Joke, but what I am about to write is true and a bi-annual occurrence. In April and November, I commit myself to writing a blog a day for 30 days. Formally known as NaBloPoMo, the official span is just in November, but I think April is a great 30-day time to do it as well. I wrote my book in 30 days in April 2012 (took another year and a half to edit and publish), and every time I force myself to the discipline of keyboard and blogging, it tends to spark things up a bit, something that is necessary right about now.

I can say in all honesty that I am not even remotely excited for this at this point; everything about my being has tended to the sludge-like, the monotonous, the tedium of daily routine. I feel like molasses uphill in January; yoga has become a chore that I have to get through (and I always feel better after, but still), and although my mercenary writing life is fine, my personal projects have come to a standstill as I actively avoid looking at what I am supposed to be doing.

So I read Steinbeck's six tips on writing, and this is what stuck:

"Abandon the idea that you are ever going to finish. Lose track of the 400 pages and write just one page for each day, it helps. Then when it gets finished, you are always surprised."

His rules mostly apply to his fiction, but there is extreme value in this rule. Abandon the hope of being done; writers know that a) it's never done, and b) even when it's finished it's still not "done." Just one piece of my own writing daily is my goal, even something beyond this blog. A paragraph. A line.

I am in a funk, no doubt, and 30 days, two more days than rehab, may be enough to get me out. At least until November.

Bloggers, won't you join me?



  1. a book in 30 days is commendable. this is my first nablopomo and I fear the commitment already and it's simply to get the posts out whatever they may be. But yes we can do this. Need to do this. Thank you.

  2. I don't think they have to be 1,500 word masterpieces. Sometimes it's just getting into the rhythm of posting, and sometimes it is just a picture of the day. We will be out of town in an internet black hole for a few days, so I will struggle for those days (there's not even phone reception), but it gets to be like brushing teeth after the first week or so. You just do it because you know it's good for you and you want to avoid heart disease. :)