31 Day Declaration

In Journaling by Allison Byxbe

I’ve accepted the challenge to write 500 words a day for the next month. Oh goodness.

Five hundred words. That’s like writing a two page paper every day for the next month. (Now I know how my students may feel!). I say I’m a writer, but how committed am I to that idea? Well I just got about 500 words a day committed.

Day 1: I’m supposed to tell the whole wide world that I’m committing to this thing. So here I am telling you!

What you can do: As my lovely readers, occasionally ask me over the next month how I’m doing with my 500 words a day. You can also read my 500 words each day, right here, on this blog. Now, these posts will not be as polished as what I typically like to put out in the world but I always tell my students, it’s better in writing to work from an abundance of words than too few. Revision can always happen later.

Why: It’s an experiment — let’s see what writing goodies I can come up with when I am actively and consistently writing every day. But why would I do such a thing? Well, I know it will make me a better writing professor. And, it’s continuing the adventure I’ve been on for the past year and a half of really focusing in on who God has made me to be, and I really believe He has made me a writer.

Here’s the deal: I find it very easy to dole out advice. But actually do the thing I’m saying you should do? Hmmmmmm….. Anyone else guilty of this? I preach to my students regularly: good writers write and write regularly. I write more than some but “regularly” might be a stretch.

Then, a year ago I started writing along with my students. Instead of just handing out writing assignments like candy and then kicking my legs up on my proverbial desk, I actually wrote along with the assignments, too. And it was beautiful! I enjoyed joining them in their work in that way and actually some of my favorite blog posts emerged from doing so. Like my post Grit & Bear It and Green Beans. More was written than was published on here but that will likely change since I’ll be writing every day for a month.

Despite my trepidation, I am actually excited about this challenge. In the same way I love the challenge of a good hike up and around a mountain, I am looking forward to the way my writing muscles will be stretched and strengthened by using them every day.

Okay, do y’all know how many times I’ve looked down at the word counter? About 5,637 I’m pretty sure. And I’m just over 450…not even quite to my minimum yet. This is good practice. If I want to fully embrace my writing life, I have to push and stretch myself. It just may not be the most composed thing you’ll ever see from me.

So, feel free to send me all the encouragement and Ningxia red, and chocolate you like this month. That’s 515 words before this last sentence 🙂