Full disclosure: I’m beginning this post with absolutely no idea of what I’m going to be writing about.
This breaks the rules of blogging and I should be ashamed of myself! Apparently, all the best writers have writing schedules in which the author will slate a whole week or month of topics which they intend to write about. Not saying this is a bad idea at all, just saying it’s all a bit serious.
I’ve been blogging before blogs even existed, back in the ‘what’s this here internet thingamajig?‘ days when blogs were called online journals. Online journals were the “beta” version of blogging. They were far more organic (disorganised), more bold (shamelessly extrovert) and utterly altruistic (no monetization opportunities existed). I wrote an online journal entry almost every day from 1997 to 2002, enjoyed middling popularity with it, and bless me, I never had a schedule, I never planned a thing, I never fretted too much about what I would write.
There is, however, a lot to be said for not planning what you are going to write. As a dramaturg and writing workshop facilitator, both online and off, I tend to spend a whack of time convincing people they need to think about structure. And structure does mean planning, and maybe even scheduling. But to write, just write, to see what comes up, these are all good things too. Writers write. We don’t necessarily need to plan. When the Muse descends, any planning we put in place is going to be useless anyway cuz when that Muse kicks in, she’s going to slide right over everything.
Writing every day does make a huge difference. How? Not sure. But it does. For me.
Years ago when I applied for the New York Dramatists’ Exchange, a national prize that offered a three-week residency in New York, I was a rank outsider. Nobody had even heard of me. My play got shortlisted with five other plays. The panel in New York chose me. It was incredible, so baffling, so odds-against, it almost felt like I had won the Lotto.
In New York, I met with one of the panel members and she confided in me that the panel had been deadlocked between choosing my play entry or another. They adjourned their meeting, and over lunch, this panellist went online to check my online journal. There she saw that I wrote every day. She realised that I was serious enough to do that. She believed I had a greater commitment to writing. She came back to the meeting and voted for me and my play. Yes, writing everyday matters.
At some point, I will be making blog writing topic schedules as well. God help me.