Today’s prompt from A Year of Writing Dangerously by Barbara Abercrombie had me fairly stumped. It took a strong cup of tea, some procrastination cleaning and one deep breath to settle the matter.

Write a letter (but don’t mail it) to someone close to you about your first chapter, essay or short story.

It’s taken me a few brain cells to think of who I’d like to share this information with. I’m not in the habit of sharing my writing progress and especially in this case where there is entirely a lack of progress.

But this prompt did remind me of a faraway promise made last Fall to my Aunt to hold each other accountable and start sharing more of our written work (writing aspirations may well be genetic!). So…

To my dear Aunt
As you know I’ve begun 2020 with an attempt at more writing only to realize one week in, I’ve not declared an actual writing project beyond getting some blog posts up now again. I think I can be a bit more ambitious than that.

Recently, I came across this calculation that another writer shared: 3 pages a day x 5 days a week = 15 pages a week which could work itself out as a rough short story… x 52 weeks in a year = which seems to me at least a 50% shot of 20 decent short stories to put into a collection. Maybe more than that but if half could turn out to be strong drafts… yippee!

So that’s become my new focus to start next week. I plan to use the next few days to decide if I want to pursue this direction with one of my current sets of characters and develop their stories in this style versus how I’ve attempted in the past OR sketch out a fresh place and “cast” to work with.

This feels very positive though. Short stories always feel more doable for me. I think it’s the journalist background and my past experience of writing to assignment.

There is comfort in that. Let us see if there will be progress. I promise to send off these assignments to you, as my acting editor in chief.

Love to the family and all the best,

Note to self: resolve this lack of writing, absolve your guilt and boost your self-confidence by putting this reasonable plan into action, darling.