In simple words, I will write 1000 words EVERY day for the next 100 days (at least) without fail. In case you want me to email you when I publish the post, let me know and I will add you to the list. There are 4 people on the list already. The day I dont write, I'd donate 1000 bucks to my poker kitty. Sidenote: I did something similar about #book2 and I never got around to keeping my word. Let me take this up in a bit.
So, lately I have been super busy with work and travel and shifting the house. And as a result, I havent been reading, havent been writing, havent been exploring ideas, talking, meeting new people, growing or anything that has made me who I am. So, there is this void in life. I am not happy - I mean I am happy most days, most times. If I look back at this phase of life ten years from now, I will consider myself happy. But that thing, that magic that we seek from life is missing. I cant put a finger to it but hope you guys get the drift.
Anyhow, so, I need to reclaim life and what better way to do so than getting back to writing? For as long as I can remember, writing has given me pleasure and I've never had any issues with churning words -- I am very fast writer -- but I have had issues with sitting down to write.
I have had phases where I've written for days non-stop and then there have been phases where I havent written a single word (this one for example - the last time I wrote, it was septemberthe23rd. Almost 15 days, if not more. If I were Suketu Mehta, it makes sense to not write for this long. But I am not. Thing is, it takes serious effort for me to write something that is half-decent. And unless I write copious amount of words, I wont be able to leave behind a body of work that keeps me alive after I am gone.
Wait! Do I want to leave something behind? Something to be around when I am gone? I dont know. As I grow older, I feel that the impending end of time is closer than ever and the reality has started to hit home. No, I am not scared. No, I am not suicidal. No, I am not depressed. Its just that with every passing day the frivolity of life is getting more evident (may be its all the reading around death that I am onto lately - When Breath Becomes Air, Chasing Daylight, what else can I read?). Its disappointing that you live through all these years, hoping to make a dent in the universe and in the end it amounts to nothing. There is no grand plan. There are no white lights at the end of the tunnel. All is useless.
Except things that keep you going, before you die.
For example, something that you are attached to. People in most cases. Family, friends etc. I live away from my folks and I hardly have any friends per se. Or for example routines, things, disciplines, beliefs that you get attached to. You get so attached that you want to live forever on one end of extreme. And you want to kill (or even get killed) on the other. Religion is a case in point. Or may be the blinding chase of a passion project that wakes people up in the morning and like Warren says, makes people tap dance to work. There is no passion project for me except writing. There are few other things that I want to take up but I am not consumed by those yet. For example, there is this thing in my head where I want to impact a large subset of humanity but I have no clue how to go about it.
Even with writing, because of all the useless action around me, I have been postponing writing. Actually come to think of it, since I can remember I have postponed things, procrastinated to the next minute. Next hour. Next day. Next month. Next year. All the time keeping things pending for the tomorrow that would be brighter and better and see me more rich
The point is, the "better" world is not coming anytime soon. Ever. All you have is today. The now. You cant fuck the tomorrow for whatever may be trying to fuck it for you. You've got to be that unstoppable force that is willing to collide with an immovable object. I've learnt that friends often arent around when you need them most, families tend to engage in petty politics more than they care for you, bosses and colleagues tend to be assholes. The day you are getting late, you will get red light on each intersection. Shit goes wrong. Whatever can go wrong will go wrong. Of course there are exceptions but you cant let anything affect the steady rock in your head. Funny that the person with mood swings larger than the Foucault's is talking about being stable. Being sane. Being immovable. Gyaan is easy. No?
But, as I go along, I will make sure I become stable. I dont know what could help. But there has to be something.
I think it all starts with one small thing - the resolve to do things now. Keyword is Now. Its ok to make mistakes. Its ok to pay for action. Action trumps everything else. And things = writing, getting out of the bed, putting on those running shoes, saying no to that last piece of jalebi and so on and so forth. Action. Things. Now.
And to kickstart one of the things, I promise that I will write 1000 words a day. For the next 100 days atleast. Follow me as I do this. Help me do this. Reprimand me if I falter. And may be, just may be, take up the challenge? 1000 words a day for you too? Or may be 10000 steps a day? Or something else that you thought you wanted to do but havent had the time to?
Oh, one more thing. This one, on promises.
So, through my life I have made promises and more often than not, I tend to deliver on those promises. But lately, since I've got busy with things, I havent kept my word. I have promised things and I havent delivered. With clients, friends, colleagues, people etc. I even made a similar promise about #book2 and I did not keep it. And it sucks! I want to avoid this suckiness in my head as I go along. I want to sleep in peace at night.
I know I cant fix what is broken but going forth, I will not make promises that I cant deliver on. My word has to become Gold standard. People have to put enough faith in me. All that will happen if I start delivering. Most times I do. But then I need to aim for perfection and ensure that I deliver on EVERY promise. My zubaan has to be respected. After all zubaan is what makes the world go around. I am nothing if I cant keep my word.
As I start afresh, the first promise going ahead, is to write 1000 words a day. Starting today. Godspeed Mr. Garg.