Struggling to write? Feel like you’re posting 200+ words only because you told yourself you would? Because when you rationalize it, 200 words really ought not be too hard? But it is hard. It was for me, and here’s why:
Lately, I’ve been able to code spontaneously. Even without plans, I’ll find myself coding something. But with writing, even though I enjoy it, it’s not something I spontaneously fall into. Unless schedule in, I probably won’t do it.
When 200WAD began, there wasn’t a timezone feature. So the daily deadline for me came at 6PM. So what I’d been doing for the past several weeks is scheduling my daily writing time around 5. BTW - I never changed my timezone still because I like seeing Zurich on my profile haha.
This was good slot at first. I’d finish work and begin writing. Then the New Year was beginning to turn not so new. My girlfriend started classes again, and 5PM no longer became free for me. 5PM needed to be flexible. There could be the odd social event or the usual ride I had to give my girlfriend or on a lot of days, I’d just want to work a little longer.
So 5 PM became not a good time. But I continued to write then, because I’d told myself I would. And from this experience, I’ve learned the fastest way to second guess your ambitions is by scheduling two of them to fight for the same time slot. In this case I began second-guessing writing. How could I not? I had designed my day so that 5 PM became decision time. Everyday, I had to decide whether writing was something I wanted to do. And I had done it most days because I scheduled it in, but it always felt like it was encroaching on my already established programming flow. It felt like back-to-back tinder dates on a Friday night.
Because today is a big day at work for me, yesterday was a busy one. I’ve been re-writing a webapp and I’m giving the stakeholders their first demo. So yesterday evening, the writing naturally felt even more imposing come 5 PM. I began thinking crazy things like, oh maybe I don’t want to write. Maybe I’m meant just to program and do business. But with a clearer mind I thought further that, no I should just reschedule my writing, so it never feels like it is encroaching on the programming.
The thing here is that I’ve been having these for about two weeks now, yet I still forced myself to write. Yesterday’s more dire work-constrained moment allowed me to commit to another possibility. Just write at another time. So here I am. Writing during my morning.
It wasn’t easy to make this new commitment. For a moment last night. I thought about not only my streak, but also the writers on the fellowship creeping up on me -- like @timsubiaco haha. This all gave me a little pain. Made me consider writing yet another unmotivated post before the 6PM deadline. But luckily, I was able to not let the pain steer me. I instead got back to work. So here's a post that I wrote, and actually liked writing. Hope you enjoyed!