Our Editor, Jennifer Richards, has taken up the challenge to write a play in a month as part of our #WrAP initiative. With Week Three done, she’s realising it’s not always healthy to push yourself.
Sadly life isn’t always as simple as setting a goal, working for it and achieving it. Sometimes obstacles just get in the way, and that’s what happened when it came to my #WrAP writing this week.
Without going into too much detail, I had a health procedure this week that left me a bit worse for wear. So my normal writing schedule took a slight hit (or a rather giant one).
Because I knew I had this one-month goal looming over me, I wanted to push through it and get to writing. But my mum would tell me off the second she saw me reaching for my laptop. And, as in many situations, it’s mother knows best. Because at the end of the day, writing is something I love to do, not something I’m obligated to do. And if I don’t take care of myself, I won’t be able to write at all.
The #WrAP deadline is there to inspire us and motivate us, not a stick to beat ourselves with. Some weeks we’ll be more productive than others. And that’s fine. You’re not going to write a good quality script if you’re forcing yourself to write it when your body really needs to be doing something else – which in my case, was spending this week resting and recovering.
As I couldn’t really write this week, I choose to read.
I flipped through old short scripts I’d written – and realised one of them (with a bit of tweaking) would fit in as a scene in my play I’d been writing for #WrAP. Quite a nice surprise!
So, even though I haven’t written anything this week, I’ve also added 20 pages to my script. 20 pages I now can’t imagine the story without. Life’s funny like that.
So if you’ve had a less than productive week, I wanted to use this diary to say it’s fine. Don’t beat yourself up about it. #WrAP might stand for writing a play in a month, but it’s equally as brilliant if it’s been a starting point for a promising play you can continue working on in February. Or if it’s just been a short play you’ve been working on. Or even just perfecting one really good scene.
The main thing is that when weeks like this happen, we as writers don’t just throw in the towel. You had a week off – so what? A new week’s about to begin, and it’s a new chance to pick up that pen (or tap on that typewriter if you’re old school).
So here’s to a new week!
I’d love to know how #WrAP’s been going for you, both the successes and the things you’ve been struggling with. Tweet us at @LDNPlaywrights using #WrAP2018 and let me know.
And if you haven’t signed up for #WrAP yet but would love to still take part and get going on your 2018 writing goals, you can find out more about how to become a member of LPB and join in with the initiative here.
Roll on Week Four!