I Showed Up 30 Days in a Row

April 30, 2007

Part of being a creative person, an artist, a human is simply showing up. You show up for your work, your beliefs, your people. Every day for 30 days (I keep writing ’32 days’ — ha) I showed up for writing.

For the past 30 days, I showed up for poetry. As a result, I have 32 poems written during the month of April. I wanted to quit every day for the first 20 days, and then I got used to the process. I got used to the elation of completing one poem only to know I had another to write the next day. I got used to giving myself permission to risk new styles, methods, and poets. I got used to thinking about poetry in the background all day long. The next poem was often brewing not long after I created the first one.

When I showed up every day, I learned:

  • I can fit daily writing into my busy life.
  • The more I write, the more I write.
  • I write better when I push myself to write more in one poem. If I don’t push myself, I end up with little poems that do not do justice to the subject. I call these kinds of drafts skeletons, and they are all right some of the time. When I push myself, I add more and more and the associations become stranger and, to me, more enjoyable and creative and pleasant to experience.
  • That I won’t necessarily write on the same subjects when writing a lot of poems in close succession. I had one main subject in mind and quickly veered into new directions.
  • That my drafts did not have to be bad.
  • That writing is tiring work.

You can read the full list of my poem titles on my NaPoWriMo page.

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