Monday, January 11, 2016

The ILacqua Experiment, Part 1

Janice constantly says she wants to be more of a writer. She's got ideas. At times she wants to write her manifesto, The Abundance Manifesto. Sometimes she wants to be the writer yoga instructor. I think both ideas are great, and both ideas would not only be ample to write about, but interesting too. When she starts writing, she won't stop.

I think Janice is a better writer than I am. I've felt this way for almost 20 years. She has never claimed or denied my assertion that she is the better writer. She does, however, think I am a disciplined writer. I suppose I agree with the statement. However, I am not nearly as disciplined as I once was.

To be a disciplined writer doesn't take much. All it takes is a daily practice of writing. Perhaps it only takes a weekly practice of writing. I try to write daily, but it doesn't always happen. I'm at home all day with my three year old son. I work evenings. I write during nap times, I get the after work hours and nearly 5 hours a week during preschool. All said, I'm writing weekly for the same amount of time I used to write daily.

Is this a question of quality or quantity?

I wrote for The Sophia Ballou Project from late 2010 until April of 2014. The Sophia Ballou Project started in May of 2010 and it ended in 2014. It was a very rewarding project and as far as my career as a writer, my time as a contributor at The Sophia Ballou Project was definitely a highlight.

Of the three of us contributing to The Sophia Ballou Project, learned a great deal from the other two. From Sophia, I learned the nuance of observation and how potent seeing and I mean really seeing the world can be. From Tor I learned about Czech writers and his writing is insightful, meticulous and informative.

As for my part in the project, I learned the value of the deadline. I contributed weekly for every year save 2012 which was bi-weekly. When I consider deadlines and discipline, I had no choice during my years at The Sophia Ballou Project since I had due dates weekly. I had something due one Fridays there and I had something due here on Mondays. At the time I was also submitting work to other magazines plus what needed doing at my own magazine, Umbrella Factory.

Needless to say, The Sophia Ballou Project ended almost two years ago and I've missed it terribly.

One day last November, Janice and I were at a coffeehouse talking about writing. I suggested that she start a blog. I feel like a blog is a great way to work into a concept. I guess for me, I always felt like the blog was a fluid thing. With a blog, you don't need to have a concrete plan, not at the onset anyway. Imagine leaving 1,000 words weekly at a blog and then do it for 6 months or a year and see what you get. 1,000 words a week leaves you with a novel at the end of the year.

It only takes a few minutes to start a blog. Within 5 minutes you can have your first post. It only takes a few hours to become proficient with it. But it takes a very long time to build content.

On that icy morning we started The ILacqua Experiment, which is Janice's blog, and I get to contribute. It's our way of working together, inspiring one another and holding the other accountable.

I don't know if the longevity of The ILacqua Experiment will be what The Sophia Ballou Project was, only time can tell that. I also don't know what I'll learn yet, or if it will be the same wonderful experience as it's predecessor was to me. Of course, I would never be able to emulate what I had in the past with The Sophia Ballou Project, and I wouldn't want to. It's about forging ahead. It's about new experiences, new relationships and new thoughts.

No comments:

Post a Comment