Here’s my list of victory conditions, compiled from a number of sources, from my personal experiences, and my scientific determination of what will make me feel superior for as long as possible.
1. Write every day.
Of all of them, this one is the hardest to achieve. I’m a creature of habit. And when there are five days of the week that are relatively similar, what with work, and school and bathing, it’s easy to keep going. But the weekends roll around and everything is different.
No alarms, no real routine (at least with my family). And with the noise and interruptions. It’s just much more challenging to make happen.
2. A daily word count. Like 1000 words a day.
1000 words is a good starting point for beginners, according to Stephen King in his horrible book1On Writing.
3. But really, 2000 words a day.
2000 words a day is how many words you should write every day, if you really mean it. If you’re serious. According to Stephen King. He said it in that same hated book.
4. Write a story a week for a year.
Who was it? Ray Bradbury or someone? Anyway, some successful writer said that when you’re just starting out don’t dig right into a novel. You don’t learn enough from a novel. It takes too long. Try to write a story a week.
Find your voice. Write shitty stories. Just write 52 of them. One a week. I think he said that no one can possibly write 52 bad stories in a row. I’m setting out to prove him wrong.
5. Write a post a week for a year
I have trouble with articles. So I’m trying to get better. And why not just copy the notion of writing a post a week? 52 posts. That’s not bad. Work out the process of having ideas and then attempting to articulate them into an article.
So those are my victory conditions. Some challenging, some easy, all do-able on my schedule. I can get at least one of them a day, and up to three, and I get another two every week.
So it’s a start. Maybe I’ll add more later.
Let’s see if it works:
Last week, I wrote a story. And I wrote a blog post. I’m two days into my next story. And yesterday I wrote…checking the numberrrr…here it is:
I’m feeling something…yes…yes, the warm glow of smug superiority.
- I hate On Writing by Stephen King. I did read it, and I got some good things out of it, but I don’t like some of the messages it sends about the process of writing. I’ve been trying to put my anger into words for some time now and haven’t succeeded. ↩