I don’t even know why, but I signed up for DigiWriMo — Digital Writing Month — sponsored by the folks at Hybrid Pedagogy and the Marylhurst English and Digital Humanities program. It’s based on the National Writing Month challenge where the goal is to write 50,000 words in 30 days. I’m 110% sure I’m not going to accomplish that goal. I’m stating that now for all to see, but I am still participating. I tend to be pretty competitive, so maybe I’ll get close, but that’s not the point of it for me.
If I don’t plan on meeting the goal, then why am I doing, you might ask. Well, I have 3-4 reasons:
- I like the folks putting it on and see it as a way to collaborate, network, and learn more about digital humanities and digital writing. Every interaction I have had with them has been rewarding and helped me learn more about this field and re-think teaching, and perhaps now writing.
- I need to become a more disciplined and regular writer. I’m a grad student. I read and write a lot. But I’m also a procrastinator. I realize that I wont have deadlines and professors pushing me to be productive and finish my work. Someday I want to write books, do research, etc. I’m hoping that doing this will give me ideas, tips, and just plain old practice in carving out time to write.
- I’m behind on some of my work. I feel like this gives me extra-momentum and support to catch up.
- I want to learn to stop being anxious about writing. I think sometimes I put it off because I think I don’t have anything to say, or that it wont be good enough. I need to learn and be forced to put my ideas on the page no matter what. I’ve found that when I do, it really helps me think through ideas and issues I am working on. I’m fond of the phrase “writing to know” because I think writing helps us process and truly learn things.
I’m not without reservation signing up for this. I don’t really like word counts. I don’t know where or how I’m going to share my stuff. Some of my words will just be grad school assignments that I dont think are appropriate to publish here. Others might be journaling, creative, etc. I might work on outlines and brain storms too. Who knows. But I’m using this month as time to be productive, to write, to share, and to learn. Stay tuned to see how it shapes up. I’ll certainly be keeping up with my once-a-week posting my goal and probably will have more than that.