I’m not a huge believer in New Year’s resolutions (I tend to reflect more around my own birthday about the coming year). But I do like the idea of using the new year as a jumping off point for a new project. So that’s what I’m doing today, one day into 2014.
I’ve decided that I’d like to write more this year. Or, more specifically, I’d like to write more regularly this year. Last year, I wrote quite a bit, but I’d do so in large chunks of time and words and I never felt like I achieved a good cadence in my writing. So I’m switching things up.
This year, my plan is to write roughly 500 words a day in the form of a short post here on this site. Some days I’ll undoubtedly write more, some days I may write less. But 500 words seems like a reasonable amount to both write in a timely manner and for you to read in a timely manner.1
And it has a nice precedent.
It is said that no less than Ernest Hemingway used to write 500 words a day.2 Of course, Hemingway’s 500 words were steps in a slow march towards the next great American novel — I suspect my 500 words will be decidedly less consequential. But that’s okay. I have no grand ambition here other than to write.
To that end, I’m trying to be realistic. While 500 words may not sound like a lot, when you’re staring at a blank page, it can seem like infinity. So I’m not going to limit myself to only writing about what I normally write about: technology.
Technology will undoubtedly still be the vast majority of my writing, but I’m really going to try to not write the same things over and over again — most of you already know how amazing I think the iPad is.
Regular readers of this site may know I have a pretty wide variety of interests simply from what I link to. Film, sports, beer… Maybe I’ll write about some of those at times. Maybe I’ll write about something else. But I wouldn’t be shocked if there’s still some sort of technology angle that ties everything together.
Truth be told, I’ve been prepping for this experiment for a few weeks now. I’ve already learned that trying to write 500 words when you’re used to writing 1,000 to 2,000 words is a lot harder than it sounds. I think the key here for me is to be a bit more casual. These posts aren’t meant to be dissertations, I’d like them to be more lightweight, quick, and conversational.
We’ll see if I can make it an entire year. There will of course be days here and there when something will come up and I will have to forgo writing. But I’m going to try to get some words up every morning when, “there is no one to disturb you and it is cool or cold and you come to your work and warm as you write.” Like Hemingway.