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IMG_2535You did this to yourself, you can undo it!

Yes and no. I’m really an aggressive stickler for a self-imposed deadline. I’m not bragging. It’s annoying. But writing is so solitary that if I’m not accountable to myself, I’m completely lost.

Last time I blogged in the “I write” category,” I expressed my desire to try to free write one short piece of nonfiction every day this month. On Monday night, the first, I sat up in bed, in the dark, swore out loud, realized I’d already forgotten about my stupid free write challenge, and pulled out my laptop to write a piece on learning how to shoot that I’ve called “I keep all my honesty down the barrel of my gun, how much do you want?”

I know that sentence has a lot of information, but the important part of it highlights the one challenge of giving yourself writing projects and deadlines: will you do it or won’t you?

The normal challenges of writing don’t apply. It’s not about time because there is never enough time. It’s not blocks because 1) I don’t believe in writer’s block and 2) I’m free writing. It’s not about self-doubt because self-doubt about my prose narratives is what fueled my desire to free write every day in June. It’s not someone else’s deadline, so on the one hand, I feel no outside pressure; and on the other hand, I don’t have to write anyone an apologetic email if I fail. Finally, there is no failing! If I write on only 28, or 12, or three days of the 30 in June…then I wrote something on that many days.

The only challenge, again, is deciding, will you or won’t you?

Monday, I did. Tuesday, I also wrote in bed, but I at least remembered to before I TRIED to go to sleep (last night’s piece is called “Wish for my two-year-old son.” Even in free writes, I write, mother, and try.).

Today…who knows? But I will do it, dammit. No sleep til Brooklyn.