No two ways about it: without this challenge, I wouldn’t have written today.
I got to bed at 4:00 a.m. and rose six hours later. As is my (bad) habit, I reached immediately for my phone to check email and ensure there were no crises.
Except there was.
A client’s paralegal sent me a ruling I’d been awaiting since December. It wouldn’t have qualified as a crisis except for the date on the ruling: May 25, 2021.
Last Tuesday. A full week ago.
“That’s not a crisis,” you protest. “So she was a little late in sending it to you. So what?”
The so what is this: I only had ten days to respond to the ruling, and this was the sixth day of that ten-day period. Plus, it arrived on what was probably going to be my busiest work day in months.
For the rest of the day, I was in fairly frantic mode. I worked out matters with the crisis ruling, including a phone call to my client who’s vacationing on the Cape all week. I fielded calls from the clients whose projects were already in crunch status as well as one from another client who had decided she wanted me to go forward with a project she’d put on hold last week. In between, I researched and wrote at fairly close to top speed, with very short breaks to do things like bring in the mail and the garbage cans, run out to the store for wine, and microwave leftovers for dinner. Then, it was back to my desk until past midnight, when I sent an extremely rough draft of a brief to a client.
Without the #1000wordsofsummer challenge, I probably would have turned on Schitt’s Creek and done online jigsaw puzzles until I felt sleepy. But I’d told a lot of people I would be writing 1,000 words every day for fourteen days, and the prospect of quitting on the second day—and having to admit it to all of you—was more than my ego could stand.
So I came out to the living room, turned on the CD player (don’t judge me), and wrote 1,007 words while listening to Yo-Yo Ma.
Two days done. Not easy days, either. Without this challenge, I guarantee those 2,009 words wouldn’t exist.
There’s a school of thought that says that if you’re doing something valuable or important, everything imaginable will happen to try to keep you from accomplishing it. I don’t subscribe to this as a rule, but over the past couple days, I admit that I’ve wondered once or twice.
I guess I’ll find out tomorrow.