JAN: I have a confession to make. I'm also doing another challenge. It's called the three week Sugar Smackdown and I'm into the third week of no sugar (even the one gram in English muffins) no sugar substitutes, no alcohol, no white flour (that means no Baguettes or Italian bread) or processed grains of any kind (white rice.) Even white potatoes are frowned upon.
On the positive side, this challenge is doing as promised, and I've lost my four o'clock craving for chocolate and can look at desserts with sincere disinterest. But I still miss my morning cran-raspberry juice, I miss a glass of Pino Grigio with dinner when I'm at a restaurant, and I am beyond sick of no-sugar iced tea, water, and flax-oat-pita bread with hummus.
In contrast, I'm not suffering from any deprivation in the Writer's Challenge; there is nothing I miss. I surely don't miss checking my email first thing in the morning. I don't miss looking at the clock and realizing its 10:30 and I still haven't written a word because I've been caught up in blogs or responding to Facebook messages. And I'm not sick of producing a minimum of one to two pages of new writing a day!
As others have written in to say: I feel better about myself when I'm not sucked into the Internet. When I accomplish my own goal before I indulge in what Hank calls "passing notes in class" (email) or what I think of as chit-chat at the water cooler. So far, there is no down side.
A technical point. One day I wrote a full page of a scene, but the next day I decided I didn't need that scene at all and jumped to a different scene. Does that one page count, even though I scrapped it? I think so -- because sometimes you have to write a bad page to see that its exactly what you don' t need. The bad move offers clarity on a better move. What do you think?
In other news :Julie Hennrikus at the SISTERS IN CRIME National Blog heard about our challenge and the incredible response to it (almost a hundred participants) and will be writing about it later this week at http://sisters-in-crime-sinc.blogspot.com/ Check it out. One of the things she wanted to know if there were any surprises.
Outside of how many people shared my Internet procrastinations, I've been surprised at how I've started to feel a connection to all of you sharing this six week journey, and how people have been willing to share some of their personal struggles and frustrations both in blog comments and on Twitter #JRWRITEFIRST.
So please, keeping sharing.. Writing is an emotional game, and our productivity often suffers from setbacks like bad writing days and rejections.
The good news is that we've all had those bad days and cried about those rejections. We all can really understand.
So keep it going: WRITEFIRST!!