I love to take baths. The warm water feels so good on my skin, and after I’ve cleaned myself off I sit and sit until the water goes cold. But somehow, I never want to get into the bathtub. I find the transition difficult.
In the same way, I love to write stories — but it’s hard to get started. I write on the computer downstairs in my office, but somehow, whenever I get there, I end up on Facebook. It’s a matter of training my brain to expect to get to work, of establishing a habit. And that takes a while — somewhere between 18 and 254 days, apparently.
So I’m setting a goal for myself: 250 words per week for six weeks. If I can set a habit of writing 250 words per day, and keep it, then as a writer I will be set! Sadly, I don’t take myself seriously as a taskmaster. That’s why I’m asking you, dear friends and readers, to help guilt me into writing!
How? Through the Clarion West Write-a-thon! It supports scholarships for fledgling authors taking part in a six-week intensive writing program called Clarion West. There, they learn the trade of science fiction / fantasy / speculative fiction. They learn the craft, and they make connections. Maybe five, ten years later, some book of theirs shows up on the shelves of your local bookstore, and you pick it up and stay awake all weekend reading it.
I didn’t take part in the Clarion West workshop (I got an MFA instead) but Clarion West supports me as a writer in many other ways. The Richard Hugo House now has day-long Clarion workshops, and a con called Potlatch as a small workshop called “Taste of Clarion.”
So if you sponsor me for the Clarion West Write-a-thon, you’ll be doing two great things at once – you’ll be helping guilt me into writing, and you’ll be helping train the award-winning speculative fiction authors of tomorrow. Pledge whatever you’re comfortable with — even a $5 pledge helps! For every $10 pledge, I’ll put a 50-word excerpt up on this blog.
Here’s my official write-a-thon page, with all the details! While you’re there, be sure to check out the other fabulous writers who are taking part in this write-a-thon!
P. S. Check back on my blog — I’ll be keeping a log of how many words I wrote.