I looked up the word ‘resolution’ in my online Thesaurus because, let’s face it, it’s always easier looking stuff up and passing it off as research, than getting started on a new writing project like this blog.
It struck me that a lot of the words listed could be applied to us as writers, or rather, could be applied to the sort of writers we might like to become.
Words like willpower, intention, perseverance and resolve. Even spunk and pluck (stop giggling at the back!)
My house is never cleaner than when I should be writing.
I don’t know about you, but I daydream about being a writer with willpower. Perhaps if it wasn’t for those pesky work deadlines and the need to eat, I could be. Although if I’m honest, I get led astray just by wondering how to spell ‘apocalypse’ correctly or seeing a shiny object. It doesn’t take much. My house is never cleaner than when I should be writing.
I start off with an almost Disney-level of enthusiasm – I feel like I should burst into song at any moment, as woodland animals bring me my quill pen and parchment. I spring out of bed, determined to make the most of this writing session, and for at least a couple of hours I radiate good intentions, dedication and tenacity. Then real-life kicks in and by lunchtime it becomes a weakening resolve and muddled indecision. Come the evening and I’m lucky if I can summon a fugue of lethargic apathy.
I don’t think I’m alone in this.
But New Year’s Eve is the magical day when we believe we can make resolutions and actually stick to them. You might have tried to convince yourself you could do whatever it is in March or November, but, in your heart, you know it’ll only work if you say it on the very last day of the year.
Because… stuff. Mystical-type stuff. And magic. Obviously.
And if writers don’t believe in stuff and magic, then who does? It runs in our blood and dances through our heads. It’s the reason we have to keep a pad and pen by the bed, it’s why we’re people-watchers and book readers and tend to mutter to ourselves or laugh at our own internal jokes (the last couple might just be me…) Whatever it is, it’s our brilliant madness… so, join me and together let’s declare our intentions for 2020 and become the writers we want to be:
For every YouTube video we watch of someone falling off something - we commit to spending 5 uninterrupted minutes of writing before sleep.
If we start getting distracted by what might be happening across the road, we commit to writing one paragraph describing it.
If a musical beep fools us into believing something exciting is going on in the virtual world, we must first spend a minute imagining what it might be.
We will write a minimum of 1,000 words a week, even if they’re emails and shopping lists.
Dogs can bark, birds can tweet, cats can make that sound they make just before they hack up a hairball… we shall rise above everything and resolve to use our writing time wisely.
Have courage, be bold.
There were two words in the Thesaurus under ‘resolution’ that I particularly liked – courage and boldness.
Fine words for writers indeed!
Have courage, be bold:
Show someone that story you wrote.
Send that manuscript to some publishers.
Get friends round and read your plays to each other.
Start a blog? Well, if even I can do it…