April is a uniquely tough month. In my part of the world, the thaw begins and it’s bright later in the day and you begin to remember that there are things outside that you can experience without choking on sub-zero wind and/or filling your boots with ice water upon each step.
And then there are the twin challenges of Camp NaNoWriMo and NaPoWriMo, which I’d suppose sane folks may roll together — “I will write 1,000 words of poetry in April.” Fair enough, but in my sphere, self-torment is the only effective cure to an overriding tendency to procrastinate.
So here I am, five days into April wondering how to work my exhausted misery into a clever angle to produce unique written works. I’m grinding my teeth again and I don’t have time to go to the grocery store and so I’m surviving off of break-room coffee and junk from my pantry that didn’t seem appetizing when I cared what I was eating. Yesterday, I panicked in response to barometric pressure of an oncoming rainstorm and for a slim moment, I almost forgot that I was in Washington and not Ohio and no — tornadoes aren’t really a thing here (comparatively).
I’m pathetic, really. A head case living of of pickled carrots and “Herbal Magic” tea my grandma gave me because she heard I like tea and she’s had it since 1998 and wasn’t sure what else to do with it. But I have absolute confidence that when April 30 comes I will have 30 alright first draft poems and a complete first draft of Lost Constellations. I can do it, and so can anyone else.
I encourage every creative writer out there to be themselves. To be the loser, the head case, the pathetic nervous wreck on an ill-advised diet — and to use that angle to write something amazing this month. Regardless of what if any April challenge you take. Write to communicate who you are and what it means to be alive and put it out there.
I know that amazing expression can come from challenge, so challenge yourself.