I Heart Rules

Posted in: PARALLEL

On Wednesday, I posted my Game Plan for the first month of this project. I asked for feedback, advice and suggestions, and to my great delight, I got all three (along with some really sweet messages of encouragement and support – thank you!) As I’d hoped, several of you offered suggestions for additional Rules of Play – some fun, some serious – and I’ve added those to my list.

I’ve never been particularly fond of rules (or very good at following them), but I’ve discovered that there’s something about these particular rules that really inspires me. It’s partially the game element of it all, but it’s something else, too.

With every new rule, every new task, this project gets easier. More manageable.

Why? Because there’s certain freedom in strategy. In rules. In well-laid plans. The more structured my Game Plan, the more detailed my rules, the less I’ll have to think. Which is important, because thinking is a huge time suck. Thanks to my Rules of Play, I won’t have to sit around debating whether to write on Sunday or eat dinner with Husband, or wondering whether I should feel guilty about not writing when I’m on vacation in March. And thanks to my weekly task list, I also won’t have to worry about deciding what to work on each day.

Just follow the rules.

Okay, fine. You’re right. I have no idea what my life is going to look like once this baby arrives, once I’m in the throes of actually doing this thing. Maybe this game plan will be a burden. A curse. Maybe I’ll find that my rules are too rigid. Too impractical. Too… much.

But right now, as I stand here facing my creative Everest, this Game Plan is all I’ve got. It’s my map. My compass. And while it feels like a good start, it doesn’t feel complete.

I want more. More rules. More parameters. More structure. And I need help.

Here’s what I have so far:

Rules of Play: (1) Weeks begin on Monday and end on Sundays; (2) No writing on Sundays; (3) Week of March 1st – 7th is a “Bonus Week” (no obligation to write and doesn’t count towards 12 weeks); (4) At least 2 hours of focused writing time per day; (5) Once a day, must write at least 1 full page when the clock reads all the same numbers (e.g. 2:22, 4:44, 11:11); (6) Dictation/voice recordings count towards 2 hour writing requirement; (7) Must have at least 1 meal a day with Husband and Lil Mil (provided Husband is home at a meal time – if he’s at work, I’m off the hook!)

I’m open to everything from the practical to the ridiculously zany. Hey, if I’m gonna have to do this – and you’re gonna take the time to read about it – then it might as well be fun.

So, suggest away!

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