So…why am I doing the 500 Words 31-Day Writing Challenge?
By happenstance, actually.
It all began with wanting to use Twitter more effectively. That led me to a blog that contains all sorts of information about writing, including blog writing. Becoming a better blogger is a goal of mine. At the present time, I blog very infrequently. Sometimes, a month or more may pass between blog posts, which isn’t good if one wants to maintain a readership. Many factors interfere with my capacity to write on a regular and consistent basis. Among those factors is simply not making my writing a priority.
When I began blogging back in December of 2006, blogging was relatively new. Additionally, there weren’t nearly as many teacher bloggers back then, and those of us with something to say were able to get exposure. Now, there are teacher blogs upon teacher blogs – a buku of them. And, if one doesn’t have some sort of niche, it’s easy to get buried under the noise of social media.
That first blog was my best effort. I was writing out of frustration; the lack of a platform for my views in my daily work environment fueled much of my writing about teaching, learning, students, parents, administrators, and independent school culture and climate. Since then, I have attempted to initiate and maintain other blogs, and, at one point, even two blogs. Over time, it seemed that I had less to say that was of little importance beyond me and a handful of loyal readers and followers of my blogging.
But, here’s the thing: As I read post after post about blogging on the website linked above, it became apparent to me that I was blogging for the wrong reasons. Yes, I admit it, I was looking for my proverbial 15 minutes of fame, and attempted to write with that purpose in mind. In the process, I did not have my hands on the right things: establishing my voice, writing consistently, and developing my skills as a writer.
Thus the reason for undertaking the 500 Words 31-Day Writing Challenge. And undertaking is an appropriate moniker. Crafting 500 words on a daily basis for the next month is the most writing I will have ever done to-date. I am committed to the task, and I am determined to reach my goal. I realize that it won’t be easy. Actually, it is not easy. But, what the project is forcing me to do are the things that have prevented me from being a successful blogger, let alone a successful writer.
I think the most difficult aspect for me at the moment is thinking of topics about which to write. Which moves the time I write later into the day. I eventually want to move my writing time to the early morning hours, which is a much more productive time to write for me. So, I am hoping that as I progress, I will become more comfortable with the act of writing – just getting the words out – instead of how pretty it looks.