The thing about having a daily word count goal…

is that you have to keep pushing yourself to work at putting something down on paper/computer screen, even if you don’t feel like writing, even if you’ve had a crap-filled day, even if your head is a jumbled up mess because the kids are screaming and the dishwasher is running and you’d gotten the sunburn that wouldn’t say die last week and you have a headache and you are starting to feel really guilty for not doing the laundry and not returning people’s calls or responding to your emails or making comments on other blogger’s posts that you really should have read by now, wanted to read last week, if only your head had been in the place for it, but you’d learned a couple of years ago that you can’t seem to be a reader and a writer at the same time and therefore spending a large amount of your free time reading means you will have writer’s block or spending a large amount of your free time writing means you will have a strange sort of reader’s block in which you hate everything you read, unless you have read it before, regardless of how good or bad it really is.

The other thing about it is that when you do push yourself you come up with some really bad stuff that you will never let others read and you also come up with some really good stuff that you maybe didn’t know you had in you, but you can’t always tell which is which until you get pretty far into it or even to the end, so even though it seems like a piece is a worthless dead-end, you learn to see it through just to make sure that there won’t be a sudden ninety degree turn that makes the thing not just passable, but irrationally fantastic, because the last thing you ought to do is give up on what might have been the best thing you ever wrote.

There is more to learn about it, I’m sure, but that’s what I’ve learned so far.


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