Hopefully a little of both…
Before you dig in too deep with your Writer’s March goals, I’m going to suggest starting with writing about why you write…
Last summer I had the pleasure of attending the Taos Summer Writers’ Conference as a graduate student intern–the last time I will be able to do that since I’ve now graduated. At The Conference I signed up for Seattle-based writer Priscilla Long‘s week-long class, “The Art of the Sentence, the Art of the Paragraph.” (PS there are still spots left in Priscilla’s class for the summer 2013 Conference)
Two great things were sparked by in-class writing exercises: one, an essay that while it has not yet found a home (rejected by 6 of the 12 journals I’ve sent it to) was a finalist for the A Room Of Her Own Orlando Prize for creative non fiction and two, the I WRITE BECAUSE project.
In class, Priscilla had us write to the prompt, “I write because….” Twelve of us sat around the table and furiously wrote for 12 minutes. What amazed me was the commonality, that 12 people from different walks of life, different life histories, living in different parts of the country, at different ages, could connect on so many of the basics about why we are driven to do this writing thing. And how many of us like the sound of pencil on paper.
Maybe more importantly the exercise reminded me of why I’m doing this thing that is so often seemingly unrewarding.
Goals are good. Measurable goals even better. But understanding the why: why is it important to you, what is your mission, what part of your soul does attaining this goal feed? those are the things that will keep you going.
(and for a twist, if you’re curious, I wrote tongue-in-cheek “Why I DON’T write” post.)
And so, I invite you all to read about the exercise, then set your timer and go!
PS: did you know that you can get these blog posts delivered as emails right into your inbox.. on the sidebar you’ll see a tab that says “Write with us!” and you enter your email and we’ll send you prompts and inspiration every day throughout March.