Main Entry: writerhead Pronunciation: \ˈrī-tər-hed\ Function: noun First Known Use: circa 1995
1 : a (usually) temporary state of dreamy concentration and fluctuating consciousness during which a writer feels most creative, productive, and artistic < upon waking in the morning, rolling out of bed, gently shushing one’s husband, and settling in at one’s desk: “Sssshhhh, I’m in writerhead” – Kristin Bair O’Keeffe >
#38Write—my global writing initiative—is a monthly series of online writing adventure workshops for place-passionate, culturally curious writers around the world. Each writing adventure focuses on one particular aspect of culture, craft, or the writing life, and during each 38-hour adventure, writers connect with me and #38Write writers around the world via a Twitter hashtag (#38Write) and a group Pinterest board. Lots and lots of good work getting done.
Pretty good mix of voices, cultures, and storytelling, isn’t it? If you want to follow along, check out the #38Write | I EAT FEAR Pinterest board, where writers are pinning images and documenting their creative process.
Check back soon to read some pieces that grow out of this workshop.
As I incorporate big changes into my writing/speaking/creating/teaching/cultural-spelunking/global-niche life and prepare to take some delightfully serious risks, I’ve been doing a good bit of thinking about change and fear and going for dreams and building and deconstructing and all that good stuff. I knew that by eliminating Writerhead Wednesday from my weekly blog lineup, I’d lose some followers here, but yeesh, I wasn’t ready for the flurry of unsubscribes that would result. Yesterday, as the unsubscribe notices littered my mailbox, I got scared. Super-duper cowering-in-a-corner-behind-a-curtain scared. Scared that I was making a mistake by ending (at least here on the blog) Writerhead Wednesday. Scared that I couldn’t/wouldn’t achieve my vision. Scared of failure. Scared of, well, all kinds of ridiculous crap.
I got so scared, in fact, that I almost…almost…did a knee-jerk turnaround by reinstating the structured blog post lineup. I almost…almost…got on all the social media channels and yelled, “Wait, wait, don’t go! I’ll bring Writerhead Wednesday back!”
But then, I was reminded of the great wisdom imparted by Neil Gaiman:
…I hope you will have a wonderful year, that you’ll dream dangerously and outrageously, that you’ll make something that didn’t exist before you made it, that you will be loved and that you will be liked, and that you will have people to love and to like in return. And, most importantly (because I think there should be more kindness and more wisdom in the world right now), that you will, when you need to be, be wise, and that you will always be kind.
And for this year, my wish for each of us is small and very simple.
And it’s this.
I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes.
Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You’re doing things you’ve never done before, and more importantly, you’re Doing Something.
So that’s my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody’s ever made before. Don’t freeze, don’t stop, don’t worry that it isn’t good enough, or it isn’t perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life.
Whatever it is you’re scared of doing, Do it.
Make your mistakes, next year and forever.
So I got centered, remembered why I’m doing this, mustered my mojo, and came up with yet another new anthem for 2013: