I re-read my journal entry from a year ago today. There was nothing auspicious, no grand proclamation, not even a quiet prayer of hope for my year of writing ahead. Instead, I was enduring a bad cold and had just returned from holiday celebrations in Las Vegas. Clearly, I didn’t know that was the first day of this journey.
I didn’t note it after a week or even after a month but after six months when friends would ask what I was up to, I’d tell them that I write every day.
“How did you do that?” or “I’d love to do that!” are the typical responses.
It wasn’t easy but it was simple. Every day, open journal to blank page, pick up pencil, and write.
I have been writing for a long time but even during my MFA program, I never wrote every day. Even while writing this blog, I didn’t advocate for a daily practice. All of my writing years prior, I told myself that I didn’t have the time. In the last year, I have learned a lot about what’s really true about my writing practice and what isn’t.
Some of my friends are writers asking me about the mechanics of writing every day. A creative life does take stamina, but what everyone, writer or not, is truly asking is how to find something we are passionate about, how to get over ourselves and our habits, and how to keep going in this new direction.
The best way, the only way, I know how is simply to start. To begin. And tomorrow and the next day, begin yet again. It is practice that creates the momentum.