I have undertaken a project for the coming year. It is, I suppose, a resolution, the goal of which is to get more stuff done.
Context: I recently graduated college, and as such, I no longer must spend 25 hours a week at a part-time job and another 40-60 hours studying. Instead, I have only a 40-hour workweek. My nights and weekends are, for the first time in my adult life, my own.
Which is awesome. I’m excited.
For the past few years, I have carried around notebooks in which I kept ideas for poems, short stories, sketches, comics, songs, and other creative projects. Most of them were never intended to be some magnum opus, but these ideas very much clog up my head, and I would often find myself going back over my notebooks and admiring all the good ideas I’ve had.
This is not a healthy practice. In 2006, Ze Frank made a video referring to this phenomenon as “brain crack.”
So this year, I am going to expunge the brain crack from my skull. Using a variation of Stefan Bucher’s whimsical technique for sticking to a routine (illustrated at the end of this video), I have drawn the above picture of Edwin the turtle, who desperately wants to cross the chasm of poisoned spikes to reach the happy tree on the other ledge.
There are 52 spaces in that bridge. Each week, on Sunday, I will fill in one of the spaces, as long as I create some work of art that I had (or, if it is a new idea, would have) relegated to “some later time.” These will not include parts of the larger projects that I am always working on, such as finishing a novel or writing an awesome webapp. No, the Edwin projects must be standalone pieces, completed during the previous week. By the end of the year, I will have a bridge.
I must have something tangible to show for my efforts at the end of each week. The goal of this project is not knowledge or deliberation or consideration or enlightenment.
The goal is completion.
My first project is a song about Edwin’s life and how he came to be in this predicament.