On December 31st 2018, I finished my third year in a row of writing 500 words a day. Every day since January 1st 2016, I have written at least 500 words a day, writing a coherent, complete article or short story with a precise beginning and end. I’ve done this without fail, even when I’ve not been at home or not had access to a keyboard, computer or laptop. In fact, most of the time I manage to write at least 600 words a day, and very often I’ll write more, sometimes writing two 500 word articles or even one massive, long article or story.
There were never really many rules. The most important rule was that I had to write 500 or more words every day, writing from previous days don’t count towards the 500 word total and every file, whether it’s an article or a short story, has to be saved in its respective folder. If I don’t have access to my computer to save the file, then uploading my 500 words to either the Daily SPUF or the Phoviverse both count as saving the file. Only complete articles ever get published on the Daily SPUF or the Phoviverse anyway.
Because word counts are not always the same (the WordPress word count will often be 1-5 words above or below whatever LibreOffice says), I always aim to write more than 500 words, at least 510 words, just to make sure that I definitely write enough words. And no, hyphenated words don’t count.
It seems like a tedious thing, but I’ve managed to do this every single day.
And here I am, in 2019, doing it all over again. 500 words a day at minimum.
I mean, I’ve been doing this since 2016. Why should I stop now? There’s literally no reason to stop. Honestly, I’ll probably continue doing this in 2020 as well.
There are plenty of reasons to keep on going though. I mean, the Daily SPUF doesn’t spontaneously create articles to publish, someone’s got to write them. I might as well dedicate the majority of my 500 words a day towards keeping the Daily SPUF daily, right? The other half of my writing tends to go towards my own universe building, but splitting my writing between fiction and non-fiction at least gives me some variety.
Plus, it’s something creative. Something to keep the brain going.
You know what the strangest thing is though? I don’t really remember why I started doing this. I know WHEN I started doing this, as I have all my writing stored neatly inside four folders, one for each year. I remember that, at first, it was really hard trying to get started, to the point that one of my earliest writings was actually just a series of recipes from various fictional races. But I don’t remember why I started, aside from it being a new year’s resolution. Which makes things weirder because normally I never manage to keep new year’s resolutions. I normally fuck them up after a week or so. But here I am, with a new year’s resolution that I started in 2016, still going all these years later. With no real idea why.
That’s actually why I originally started this article. I was going to sit down and type about how awesome I am that I’ve kept this writing resolution going for so long, but I was also going to talk about why I started doing this. But I don’t know. I genuinely don’t.
It’s really a bit of a mystery.
You know what though? The reason doesn’t matter. It’s the effort that counts. It’s the effort that makes this all so rewarding. Which is why I’m recommending that you all try it as well.
You don’t have to do 500 words a day. That’s two pages of A4. That might be a bit too much. But why not try writing a hundred words a day and see how that goes?
Sure, in the grand scheme of things, a few words a day aren’t much. But when you look back, you’ll feel that little swell of pride that really warms the soul…