#AcWriMo = one-month challenge to write a crazy number of words that you declare in public at the outset and that you marathon towards. Note: not a sprint, a marathon. Taking part requires forethought, planning and mental preparation – hence the use of the #AcWriMo hastag and website to make sure you have some buddies to give you a lift when you need it.
Shut Up And Write= San-Francisco-started movement whereby people get together at specific times, drink coffee, ‘shut up and write’, then drink some more coffee. By setting a specific time for this ‘social’ activity people make sure to turn up, because other people are writing nearby you don’t get distracted, and the reward at the end gives a feel good kick. Plus, there’s coffee.
My Evil Plan > #AcWriMo PLUS Shut Up and Write
Starting on Sunday 4th November for five days each week (Sun to Thurs), for four weeks, I will be by the coffee shop at the Student Center between 7.20am and 10am and in that time I will write at least 36,000 words. That’s right: four weeks, twenty days, 36,000 words, approx. 1800 day. Totally do-able.
Why the schedule? To incorporate Shut Up and Write! I understand that not everyone is free every morning (especially not Sundays, especially not Thanksgiving week), but I will be there each day ready to take on the challenge and I’m hoping some people will come and partake in the fun too. If you know you have writing projects to do this half-term, and you can do one or other of the hour, just think how much better your day might be for knowing you have some ideas down on paper! NB: You don’t *have* to write 36,000 words (though people tend to be more successful if they do set something of a challenging goal).
And if no-one turns up, ever, then I will just have to turn to #AcWriMo on Twitter during breaks for inspiration!
So the planned schedule goes like this:
7.20 – 7.30: Hello…grumble…coffee..log-on
7.30 – 8.30: Shut up and Write
8.30 – 9.00: Coffee!
9.00 – 10.00: Shut up and Write
10am – Freedom/morecoffee/cake/exercise/hot-tub
Eugh. This sounds hard. Why are you doing this again?
I will ask myself this question a lot, so here are the answers for when my mind hits low notes: (1) I don’t have any choice. I *have* to write this many words this month anyway because there are so many deadlines, (2) It means I can spend all the time after 10am feeling glad that I wrote something and not worrying that time is getting shorter, (3) It’s only 20 days. I dragged myslf into an inner-city comprehensive school every morning at 7am for the past 6 years in order to teach in pretty difficult circumstances. If that’s possible, then *this* is a cinch. Just twenty days. E-z.
Right, I’m pumped. All that’s left is figuring out my comfy clothes and trying to rope other beings into the plan. After that, we’re good to go. 36,000 words. The dream starts here.