December 2nd, 2010



I don't normally actually revise old posts in place (rather than tacking a "PS" or "ETA" on the end) but I've gone back and finished yesterday's post so it can stand as one thing.

Today's prompt is:

December 2 Writing.

What do you do each day that doesn’t contribute to your writing — and can you eliminate it?

And to be honest I think I'm going to skip that because it's starting from the assumption that everything I do should contribute to "my writing", and that's not where I'm starting from. I write when I can, not because I'm trying to produce something great but because I like it and I think it helps my thought processes; but I do lots of other things as well, and if I have to become more narrowly focused to become a Great Writer then, well, I'm never going to be a Great Writer, and I think I'm at peace with that decision.

I did the post-a-day in November because I felt as though there were lots of things I wanted to write but I never got round to them; and in practice a) lots of them turned out to be rubbish when I got there, and b) I was so fixated on posting something every day that I ended up concentrating on Just Getting Something Done which meant I was avoiding writing the potentially-better stuff because I knew I couldn't do it justice. In a way it was a success because it helped me to get rid of some of the rubbish -- getting a bit closer to 'inbox zero' on the directory full of half-written fragments -- but I don't think it did much good for "my writing". (As you can tell from the scare-quotes, I feel like talking about "my writing" like that is a bit precious given that it's not my identity or my job, it's not even a particularly fervent hobby. I don't talk about "my singing" or "my reading". I'm not criticising people who do talk about it like this -- it just feels odd to me, for me.)

Of course, having said that I'd skip this prompt I've ended up writing more as a result of it than I manage on most days. There's probably a moral there, but I'm not sure what it is.