21 Days to Disciplined Writing Challenge
A dear friend who cares about writers challenged a group of us to take her 21 Days to Disciplined Writing Challenge. (I highlighted her link if you want to participate. She welcomes all comers!)
DAY #1 of the challenge was to WRITE A MANIFESTO. Here goes:
This Writer’s Manifesto by Carol Anne Perini
Write every single day. This is not an option. It is a requirement. If you write every day you will grow. You will find your own unique voice, you will gain confidence, you will believe in yourself, you will share that gorgeous ju-ju that is inside of you, that which has been living there waiting to be heard.
Read every day. There is a soup of nonsense simmering on the back of the stove of life that is clamoring to get into your head. Make certain you are intentional in your reading choices so that what you get into your head does not to leave room for what is out there knocking on your skull begging for room in your precious mind.
If you must strive for anything, strive for freedom, focus and fun.
Don’t waste one day worrying about the past. Don’t waste any other day worrying about the future. Simply live in today. (When you figure out how to do that, please let me know. I keep working on this one.)
There are many people who will judge you for all kinds of things. For example, you will be judged if you don’t have a penis, if your skin isn’t white or if it is, if you are too young, or in my case, if you are too old, if you are bound to a wheelchair or if you are a two-headed twin. They may also judge you if you chew with your mouth open, if you write with your left hand, if you put a hood ornament on the front of your car. Oh, and they will judge you if you do have a penis as well. Literally, the “ifs” of judgement go on and on and on. So, the solution is simple, be the biggest and best possible you and make no apologies.
If you read the good reviews you must read the bad ones. Don’t read the reviews. There are lots of folks out there willing to tell you how bad you are. There are lots more who won’t tell you anything. And there are some who will compliment you. Nonetheless, none of it matters. What matters is what you think.
Be discerning. Always. Don’t accept one person’s opinion or bit of advice. No matter what, folks advise you according to their own challenges, fears and desires. It is good to talk to folks, for certain, but in the end any choice you make is up to you. Choose according to your own heart, not the worries of your Mom.
You have your own brilliance and we each of us need to see it, hear it, smell it, taste it, touch it. Please share.
Get rid of unnecessary distractions. Get rid of the psychopathic boyfriend, girlfriend, husband or wife. Get rid of the job that drains every bit of your preciousness. Downsize, clear away rubble and things you have been hanging onto “in case.” If you haven’t worn an article of clothing it in a year recycle and make room for new. Clear your diet of junk. Clear your head of noise. (This may be more difficult than previously thought. Let me know what you have been doing to succeed.) Clear away the rubble that you have packed into your precious suitcase, make way for the new and then watch what comes to you, with anticipation and a candle burning…so you can recognize it. Say thank you to what comes.
Put facebook, Instagram, twitter, email, facetime, blogospheres down. Give yourself a certain amount of time with each of these and then stop. Use social media for you. Plan your blogs and facebook uploads and pictures so that you build your audience. Use it. Don’t let it use you and your precious time.
Focus is key: “Most of what we say and do is not essential. If you can eliminate it, you’ll have more time, and more tranquillity. Ask yourself at every moment, ‘Is this necessary?” – Marcus Aurelius
Here is the most important thing I have learned in my life: No matter what you say or do 30% of people will hate you, 30% of people won’t give a damn and 30% of people will love you. Focus on those who can and will love you. The rest are going to just turn the page and walk away anyway, so let them go and put your arms around the ones who stay. And let them put their arms around you!