from the Mad Tea Party illustration by John Tenniel, image in public domain
from the Mad Tea Party illustration by John Tenniel, image in public domain

A wonderful writer friend of mine initiated a brilliant motivational tool this month called March Madness. Writer-friends from around the country opted in to be part of a month-long initiative to write at least 350 words every day of the month with three opt-out vacation days.

Every morning, usually during the wee hour of 2:00 am my time, I (and the rest of the group) would receive an email from Wonderful Writer Friend which included a meaningful quote about writing or creativity or perseverance. It was the first boost to jump-start us to meet our daily minimum quota.

Throughout the day, writers would reply-all to the email, mostly with a simple notation of the number of words completed for that day. Communal accountability. I found myself, as a recipient of these emails, feeling both a need to fulfill my commitment to this group and inspired by their commitment to persevere. Day after day I have, so far, gotten up a little earlier, tried a little harder, and tackled the keyboard a little longer knowing that all across the country others were doing the same. So inspiring!

Writing is often a lonely world, even when you have the company of a vivid imagination. Too much of that isolation can make you mad as a March hare. Thankfully, March Madness came along and helped me out of my funk and back into the playful experimentation of writing for play and pleasure again!