I’ve spent a lot of my writing time today chasing WordPress gremlins. Two hours wasted trying to find one of those little guys only to discover that there is a problem affecting loads of people of which I was unaware. Lovely. Maybe I should develop a flow chart for working on these types of issues.
At any rate, I’ve been using the “Magic Spreadsheet,” developed by Tony Pisculli and championed by Mur Lafferty. It is just a Google Docs spreadsheet, shared with the world, that turns making a daily writing habit into a game. An eternal contest with no prize other than writing every day. I have to say that the idea of an unbroken chain is a compelling motivator. I haven’t missed a day since I started keeping track on the Magic Spreadsheet over a month ago.
Last night was the hardest. I spent all day at my mother’s house, working in her yard, having dinner, and talking. It was a good day. By the time I got home, after 11:00 pm, I did NOT feel like writing. But I did. I was falling asleep and wrote only what I needed to meet my goal.
When I started on June 1st, my goal was 250 words per day. That’s about one page of a novel. After each month of keeping an unbroken chain, Spreadsheet participants are eligible to “Level Up.” Your daily goal is increased as well as point value caps. It’s a bit complicated but well thought out and implemented.
So, thank you to Tony for creating the Magic Spreadsheet and to Mur for mentioning it on her podcast. I’m writing now, and I’m enjoying it. I know that I’m not writing any masterpieces yet, but I’m writing. I’m not listening to anyone telling me that I’m doing it wrong (a mistake I’ve made in the past). I’m not covering my ears and refusing to listen to advice from others either. By taking a kind of middle ground, I’m acknowledging my status as a novice writer but honoring the master within.