Day 1 of #1000wordsofsummer 2020

Stay in it.

Hi friends.

Today you will write 1000 words. Because they are burning and boiling and blazing inside of you, and you are the only one who can let them out. So: you will do this, you will write these words. Yes, you.

Elephant in the room: the world seems more brutal and chaotic than ever, how can we be expected to concentrate? How can we be loose enough in the heart, limber enough in the mind, so that our words will flow freely?

I am here with you on that struggle. I am with you, I promise.

But you have signed up for this list, and are reading this now, because you want to write. And I am so goddamn excited we are doing this together. You are about to dazzle yourself with what you will accomplish. I know you can surmount those external distractions.

My mantra as of late has been this: Stay in it.

When you are at your desk or kitchen table or couch or back porch or bed, or wherever it is you are writing these days, think to yourself: Stay in it. Stay on that page. Stay in the room, stay in the scene, stay in the moment, stay in the idea. Stay in the sentence. Stay in your words. Stay in it.

Stay in the work, until it is done.

Some housekeeping:

This project lasts two weeks. At the end, you will have fourteen thousand words, more or less. This is a significant amount of work. Some people are just happy to have written — that feeling alone an incredible reward. There are others who have worked on books during this project in past years that are now being agented or even published. People have sold essays and short stories, even finished their master’s thesis. I am excited to see what you can make out of this big pile of words.

When the project is over, the daily emails will remain online. If you miss a day, you can always go back and read the archives. If you are having trouble receiving the emails, help is here.

At the end of the day, I recommend using #1000wordsofsummer on social media to let us all know your word count. (I will mostly be on twitter, but I check Instagram too.) This is an excellent way to form community and even find accountability partners. I love how we all claim a small part of the internet for ourselves for this period of time. Your posts are a genuine delight in my life.

Off to work now, all of you.