Autumn. It’s my favorite season. There’s no better time to refocus, get back to work, create something new, and get something done.
I’ve been struggling with productivity lately and searching for some way to hold myself more accountable, not to change my writing process, nor force “outside ideals” onto myself, but to galvanize my writing. What better way to do that than to publicly announce a personal goal with the hope of inciting others to join me with their own writing endeavors. It’s positivity that loves company, not misery, right?
November is known nationally as the “writing month” for novelists. The NaNoWriMo project is an annual event in which participants rush to complete a rough draft of a novel: no less than 50,000 words, all within 30 days.
I’m not one to follow market-fed fads, nor self-aggrandizing trends, but I decided to borrow the timeline and the notion of a shared exercise, only without the meaningless, predetermined parameters and superficial expectations. Instead, I wish to use the month of November as an incentive to rally my fellow Stage 32 writers to motivate, support and aid each other with our individual goals, within our own individual terms and agendas, be it a first draft, a rewrite, a TV pilot, a feature, or a short –– whatever project you're working on, whatever stage –– and finish it within 30 days.
As aspiring screenwriters we often hear the overused and fatuous words, “it’s a marathon, not a sprint” applied to our endeavors and aspirations. “Marathon” is a lousy metaphor for whatever it is applied to: life, relationships, being a parent, living with a disability, living with an illness, and building a career as a screenwriter.
I say that as someone who has actually ran and finished a marathon of 26.2 miles. Yes, running a marathon is a lot of hard work, but it does come to an end. You do cross that finish line. You do have the satisfaction and exhilaration of reaching a clearly defined and measured goal. Unlike its life-long, ill-matched comparisons, a marathon has a finite duration –– on average, about 5 hours. Most life "journeys” have no markers, no timers, no throngs of fans, and a very, very distant finish line, if one at all.
If choosing to apply “marathon” to writing, then I would say, no, it’s not “a” marathon, but rather a never-ending series of marathons with various finish lines that you WILL reach; goals you WILL achieve.
When I arrived in Portland, Oregon, to run my first marathon after training alone for 4 months, I was thrilled to stand among thousands with common goals. We were all operating under our own agendas, but for one day we were comrades-in-arms.
Running a marathon, or reaching a personal goal, whatever it may be, gives you what you truly need: a glorious sense of your own capability.
For the 30 days of November, let’s run along side each other and cross that finish line together. Let’s extend that sense of capability and help ourselves and our fellow Stage 32 comrades.
Let’s be writers-in-arms!
We’ll use the month of November as a personal deadline to finish whatever we choose, in any manner we choose to do it.
Whatever you're working on, let's rally together and… Get. It. Done.
The kick-start of Stage 32 Write Club starts Sunday, November 1st.
Join the challenge.
We’ll share our individual progress, offer help and tips, and post motivational quotes to get us through this 30 day exercise. We'll stay in touch in the Stage 32 Lounge here and check in on RB's Weekend Blog on Fridays.
Now, who’s with me?!
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