Estimated reading time: 3 minutes
100 crazy days ago, I saw a post by a guy who decided he’ll post 100 days of haikus. They didn’t need to be good haikus, but they had to be haikus and he had to submit one every day. So I thought, sure, why not. The idea intrigued me. So I ran my own version of the challenge: 100 days of words. Every day I would post an article. It didn’t need to be a good article. It didn’t need to be a long one, or a particularly interesting one. It didn’t need to be about tech or even about anything people care about.
I just needed to post an article each day.
So How Did I Do?
In the first post (6 August 2015) I wrote:
And with any luck, 2015-11-14-future-me will thank 100-days-ago-past-me for taking this first step.
Let’s see. Am I gonna thank 100-days-ago-past-me for taking that first step?
- First things first, for the sake of disclosure: I’ve skipped a total of 5 days. I don’t feel bad about that though, because sometimes you have things that get in the way and when it came to choosing between working for a client and working for the challenge, I had to choose the client first.
- Being on such a tight schedule forced me to find post ideas from everywhere. Even though there’s nothing I like writing more about than tech, there were days when there just wasn’t anything tech-related I wanted to write and talk about. But I couldn’t simply skip the day. I needed to find something else. This led to me writing about a bunch of different topics, from saving money grocery shopping to board game reviews to time travel theories.
- I felt my writing improve as time went along. I’m not even talking about the use of language (which did improve). This is more about the actual act of writing: finding topic ideas got easier as I built a research process that works for me and I started writing faster as I got better at translating my thoughts to “paper”.
- I got to try a bunch of different formats. Articles with horizontal lines splitting the sections. Headers, no headers, capitalized headers. Posts with images, posts with gifs, posts with just text. Posts 100 words long. Posts 1,000 words long. I tried things, I had fun with it, because 100 posts at 1/week takes 2 years… mine took 3 months. There’s no better opportunity to try stuff out!
But the primary reason for starting this challenge was none of the above. The idea was to get into the habit of writing everyday.
And in that regard, the challenge worked out splendidly.
But it’s not all good.
In a way, I’m actually happy this challenge is over. Not because I hate writing, or because I won’t continue writing everyday, but there were times when I didn’t have enough time for what I wanted to do. Thing is, if you’re going to guest blog, you can’t post the same article on your own blog. Similarly, if you’re writing an article which requires a lot of research, you can’t just write half of it and post it, because the second half might force you to change the first. And so, only because there were things which the challenge was holding me back from doing which could have improved my business, I’m actually happy that the challenge is over.
With that said, I’ll miss the rush of fumbling through getting an article done at 23:30 because I couldn’t find a topic and now I need to write about mosquitoes.
So for giving me the opportunity to experience that feeling:
Well, one thing ends and a million new ones begin.
The future holds a lot of things for me, and I’ve got plans, but I’ll keep those for another post.
Fair Warning: Do not expect any posts this weekend. I’m taking a well-deserved break. If you want to read articles from the past 100 days, check out the table of contents here.