Okay, not really a duel, rather a challenge. But, I Challenge You To A...Challenge just didn't sound right.
(Disclaimer: I took a muscle relaxant for my back and it's left me a little loopy, so if I go off on a strange tangent, disregard for your own sanity.)
Back to our regularly scheduled programming...
I'm going to do something unusual. I'm going to start off with some quotes I want you to read:
"There's no perfect time to write. There's only now." Barbara Kingsolver
"You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club." Jack London
“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.” Henry David Thoreau
Feeling inspired yet? Ready to write the next NYT Bestseller?
Not quite??? Read on.
My CP, Joan, did something interesting this week. She challenged me to a writing challenge. 1000 words a day for 100 days (I added the 100 days part). The logic is this: At 1000 words per day (roughly 4 pgs per day if you figure 250 words/pg), in just about 3 1/3 months, you could have a 100,000-word completed manuscript. (Or at the very least, a finished rough draft.) Now, this is nothing new. Writing challenges are out there tempting us all the time. National Novel Writing Month (Nanowrimo), 70 Days of Sweat, etc. I've been invited to join many. And I always refuse. So what's different about this one? One word: Accountability.
Because the challenge came from my CP, I can't shirk out of posting my word count total for the day. There's no anonymity. I know at the end of the day she's going to say, "How'd you do?" and I'm going to have to come up with an answer. It doesn't hurt that I am a very competitive person when it comes to something like this with someone I know. It also doesn't hurt that I'm remotivated as of late to finish the book from hell and move on to the new idea that has me so excited I can barely sit still.
I posted this challenge on my blog and asked if there were any other writers out there interested in joining us. I got a few bites. In fact, Lexi Connor (a writer and teacher) told her students what we were doing and challenged them to something similar, albeit on a much smaller scale - 50 words in 50 days. Several took the challenge. So just for fun, I'm going to turn it over to each of you. I'm challenging you to join us. A 100-Day Challenge, if you will.
Here's how it works. I want you to ask yourself this: What would I like to accomplish in 100 days? And How am I going to go about reaching that goal? Maybe you want to write a complete rough draft. What's your target word-count? How many words per day should you write to reach that word count goal (for me it's 1000-words per day, for you it might be less or more). Maybe you want to complete a novella or write x-# of proposals, etc. Shape the challenge into something you know is attainable and then set your daily goal. One hundred days from a starting date of next Tuesday (Sept. 4th) gives us a completion date of (if I did my math right) December 13th. Plenty of time before the holiday rush to keep you from being stressed. Just imagine what you could get done in 100 days if you put your mind to it!!! The possibilities are endless.
If you're up for this challenge, I'd like you to post your goals and your target word count/day in the comment section. At the end of each day, I'll try to post a short blog asking everyone involved to give us their word count totals for that day. If you commit to this, we're going to be watching you and encouraging you, so don't think you can slide into the shadows and we'll forget you're there. ;) And because I believe in positive reinforcement....our chapter Christmas party will be happening just about the time this challenge is over. For those of you who participate and stick with it all the way to the end, I'll have a special surprise for you at the party.
So who's game? Who's up for a challenge????