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Wednesday, 7 November 2018

This Is A Challenge. By Dan Cooke



Why do we challenge ourselves? Why do we put ourselves though this turmoil?

I feel like the answer, although to a degree is rather simple, is also rather complicated in its own right. We challenge ourselves because we want to further ourselves in our chosen craft.

The challenges we set ourselves build up who we are as we proceed to create, we make words flow, worlds build, characters move, stories unfold. Without the constant pressure of ourselves and others would we actually develop it? Or would we become stagnant?

November is an interesting time for a number of reasons as a month anyway but for some of us it of course brings NaNoWriMo itself, which is a challenge for most if ever there was one. I myself have wanted to take part for a few years but been unable, and even this year as I arguably do so, I know that due to work and other commitments I will be unable to reach the desired goal, but will push to do more than normal.

November for me personally brings a time of challenge I didn't expect. I have a colleague who is also an artist (and in fact some of her work has featured on prior posts, really bringing them to life) who set both herself and me a challenge for November; we have picked a word for each day, and on those days she will draw something related to it and I would write something.

Already a challenge enough.

But like the Muppet I am I decided on the very first day that my contribution each day would be a poem. I do not understand poetry and it isn't something natural to me. (in fact prior to this November I had only written one, and it was less than mediocre) but it's a challenge!

You got this! now find that challenge!
We challenge ourselves to push past our own, personal but self-set limitations, because we grow in our craft when we do so, even if it isn't a growth we see or understand at the time it is one that will no doubt benefit us all in the long run.

So I implore you all, if NaNoWriMo is more like NoNoNoNo this month for you, try a smaller challenge that will take you out of your comfort zone, the growth you will feel from it will be a thousand times better than no challenge at all.

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