We’re nearing the end of the year, and thus we’re nearing the end of my various year-long projects.
For instance, I have read almost all the works of Shakespeare. I actually have read everything except two very short works in my anthology (I just finished The Tempest this week), but my reading calendar has me reading The Two Noble Kinsmen, which current scholarship says Shakespeare co-wrote. I also read Edward III a few weeks ago, which was not in my anthology, but seems to now be put in the Shakespeare camp. Anyway, that project is pretty much done.
Our Best of Both Worlds goal-setting workshop for the Patreon community happened on December 14, 2021. (This year’s is today, at noon, eastern if you want to join by then…). During that workshop, I decided to do my year-long writing project (basically, a very short morning pages thing I always do) with a specific theme in mind. I would do 365 entries describing a single day in the life of a character. I elected to model this on my day of December 14, 2021. It happened to be a very long and full day, if not particularly life-changing, but I thought it would be interesting to see if I could pace myself through writing 365 100-200 word vignettes on normal life.
And I have! We are closing in on sleep right now on this day, which was almost exactly a year ago, some 348 entires in. I am at 49,577 words, so it will wind up being about 51,000 words or so. This is, technically, a book length manuscript.
I’m a little wary of going through and re-reading it, because it is probably not that great. But who knows. Maybe it’s interesting. The point was more to develop the writing discipline of doing this. Something always comes to me. I have never thought that I have nothing to say. It is also a reminder to me that 100-200 words is easy. It inspires no resistance. But 100-200 words a day over a year is a book. Small things done repeatedly truly do add up. That is true with reading through Shakespeare at the rate of three pages a day, and it is true of writing things.
In any case, if you are looking for a resolution for 2023…maybe you could consider a writing project along these lines! Just write 100-200 words a day on something. The point is not to do much each time. It is to just keep going. Time will pass anyway. We may as well make the journey mindfully.
In other news: I was a guest on Modern Mrs. Darcy’s What Should I Read Next? podcast! This was so cool as it is one of my favorite podcasts. We talk about reading projects and how to tackle ambitious works (like Shakespeare or War and Peace…)
Tranquility by Tuesday is also making a few end-of-year lists. The Globe and Mail listed it as one of the best management books of the year (requires subscription). The Next Big Idea Club listed it as one of the top productivity books of the year. If you haven’t picked up a copy yet, would you do so? Thank you!
Photo: Not currently looking like this…more of an icy rain with a tiny bit of accumulation, much to my kids’ disappointment. Dec 14, 2021 was actually unseasonably warm — a detail I remember thanks to my analyzing and recounting every second of that day!